Release DetailsLABEL Escapi Music
RELEASED ON 11/6/2005
posted on 1/2006 By:
The pedigree of Sweden’s Creozoth is a good one. Its guitarist and drummer have built quite the reputation as members of doom legends Candlemass, while its vocalist has worked with Yngwie Malmsteen. What does this mean in respect to this album? It means that you know to expect at least something above average, and fittingly enough, that’s exactly what you get; nothing more, nothing less. The problem with Creozoth’s debut album lies not in a lack of great songs but in a surplus of mediocre ones. The band drowns its potential over thirteen tracks. If only it had kept it to 8 or 9 tracks… Quickly you will find that the guitar playing of Lars Johansson serves as the album’s highlight. Opener “With the Flow” has an unforgettable dirge crunch. Playful, spidery riffs abound on “State of Shock.” “For Your Amusement” almost launches Creozoth into thrash metal status. All of these are supported on a foundation of Johansson guitar invention. When the pace slows and Johansson takes a backseat to his musical cohorts, Creozoth tends to meander and bask in its own tediousness. Some might find the opposite true; that when Johansson is given full reign to launch into long solos, like that found on “For Your Amusement,” the listener is being subjected to unnecessary wankery, but I found the substantial amount of solos on this self-titled debut to contribute to its longevity. Unfortunately, for every solid track like “Forsaken,” which hooks listeners with Michael Storck’s excellent vocal work, there’s a boring “You Don’t Know” or overly simplistic “Mind.” Part of the problem is that Storck sometimes sounds as if he’s merely going through the rounds. I often can’t tell from the recording whether or not he really fully believes in this project as an entity in and of itself or merely regards this as a Johansson/Jan Lindh Candlemass side-project. I want him to explore his range and tone more. He commits himself on tracks like “For Your Amusement,” but seems to pull back on at least half of the rest. A quarter of Creozoth’s debut could have been cut to form one hell of a straight-up heavy metal album. Alas, we must settle for what we have; a respectable but filler-heavy recording from a band that hasn’t quite found firm ground yet. “For Your Amusement,” “With the Flow,” “State of Shock,” “Forsaken,” “Stares Back,” and “Bad Day” are all great songs, but the rest of the thirteen tracks are easily forgettable. I am left curious to hear whether or not Creozoth will record a follow-up and if it can stick to its guitar guns the next time around.
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