posted on 10/2005 By:
It takes some serious commitment to dedicate two decades of your life to so narrow spectrum of music as metal, and if nothing else, Neurosis Inc. have that going for’em. This lot have been around since that foul Year of Our Lord 1987; long enough that their moniker actually predates that of a certain Californian band, who actually asked Neurosis Inc. to add the suffix to their name so as to prevent confusion during the mid-nineties. These Colombians have been playing metal for longer than most of their fans have been listening to metal, and I daresay they’ve been playing metal for longer than a great number of their fans have been alive. I imagine they’re revered in much of South America; the band’s website refers to plenty of shows held, awards won and recognition earned. Unfortunately, age and experience do not necessarily confer creativity or aplomb, and all the longevity in the world couldn’t keep Subversivos Espirituales from being utterly pedestrian.
From the Final Fantasy VI soundtrack outtake of an intro to the closing power chords of “Open Wound,” there is scarcely a memorable moment to be found on this album. The music itself is a predictable blend of death and thrash metal, and I’ll be goddamned if this album is a whit different from half the forgettable crap that cropped up during the early 90’s death metal boom. This is the icky underside of the generally cuddly, endearing ‘old school’ style: damn near every riff, drum beat, and vocal lick sounds like a bland version of something you’ve already heard. Even the production sounds like a piss take of death metal’s early days. The guitars are massive but entirely hollow, and their lack of crunchy attack renders the frequent chugging sections impotent. The rickety drums and negligible vocals don’t help much, and the occasional keyboards don’t do much but reintroduce the annoying video-gamey vibe of the album’s opener. The overall aesthetic is equally silly, and writing a thrash metal song called “Thrash Metal” (in fucking 2005, no less!) is the kind of campy absurdity that can’t be explained away by the language barrier.
As impressive as is Neurosis Inc.’s determination to keep churning out more metal year after year, one would think the band could have done a little more with all that time than work their way up to the creative level of a third-tier Earache imitator from 1992. I mean, does the world really need another mediocre death/thrash band? If you keep slamming your head against the same brick wall for twenty years, is it really going to come any closer to falling? Apparently the answers are less obvious to some than to others.
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