Release DetailsLABEL Tribunal
RELEASED ON 3/8/2005
So Pretty So Plastic
posted on 7/2005 By:
Despite my general enjoyment of the admittedly over saturated metalcore scene, I find myself rather unmoved by Killwhitneydead’s third album. It has all of the elements of the more brutal end of metalcore; stabs of chaotic grind, ultra deep growls, huge breakdowns and few melodic bridges, but whether it be the random stringing of these elements together or the band's obsession with movie samples, the fact is this album is pretty mediocre, especially if you're enough of a fan of them to have picked up slightly more obscure and less publicized albums by Embrace the End, The Taste of Blood and Flight of the Jesus Dog.
Littered with movie samples galore (Apocalypse Now, The Ring, Murder By Numbers, Alien 3, Magnolia, Full Metal Jacket, Wet Hot American Summer, The Abyss, Point Break, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Punch Drunk Love, Planet Of The Apes, Robocop, European Vacation, To Live And Die In L.A., American Psycho, Legend and Rushmore, Red Dawn, to name a few), the album actually ends up becoming a detracting exercise in ‘name that movie’ rather than a musical outlet. This isn’t helped by the fact that the album is so littered with forgetful modern metalcore contrivances that the songs themselves become immediately forgotten. The first cliché is the wordy, oh so clever song titles; “If I Told You I Loved You Would I Get It Any Faster?”, “I'm Heavy Metal, But I Get the Blues Just Like Everyone Else”, “I Wouldn't Kick Her Out of Bed for Eating Crackers”. OK guys, we get it, you’re clever and witty amid your choppy, down tuned chaos; you and 403 other bands. It’s not that alone, heck, The Number 12 Looks Like You transform quirky song titles into actual songs with some level of competency, but Killwhitneydead’s song writing doesn’t parlay clever song titles into clever songs.
Even without cool samples, the material itself is just incredibly bland, even by my metalcore accepting standards. It’s so paint by number and devoid of character and rife with forced brutality and mindless, robotic structures that it imbues everything that is making metalcore such a musical kicking post lately. It's possible that casual scenesters that haven’t been exposed to anything other than Tribunal or Ferret Records, may hail this as the greatest record ever, it would seem to fulfill all the necessary requirements for a pleasing metalcore record with its oh so brutal growls and thunderous grooves and way underground movie samples, but when presented to a (I’m trying not to be conceited here) more ‘seasoned’ metalcore listener, I can see right through this hollow shell of music that’s superficially heavy and geared towards the easily pleased Hot Topic crowd.
“You Smell Excited” even gives the old scene fallback At The Gates a run, with some sharp thrash moments, but even they are drowned in a sea of samples and awkwardly faux grinding. The requisite moment of introspection “Pretty with the Lights Off”, is the album’s only high point as its simple, haunting acoustics played over the heaving terror of one of Leatherface’s (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre) victims. And could “One Match & A Gallon of Gasoline” be any more stagnant and predictable?
I’m trying not to make this review a vindictive backlash against metalcore’s current invasion and use KWD as some sort of scapegoat; that’s not the case, this is just not a very memorable album. But if you're willing to settle for trendy mediocrity, KWD may fit your bill.
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