Pro Patria Finlandia
posted on 4/2006 By:
Right about the time Impaled Nazarene released their 4th album- 1996’s heavily Motorhead inspired Latex Cult – I lost interest. It wasn’t because I no longer liked the band, I just wasn’t too excited about the direction they decided to go. Up until that point I was very pleased with their dirtied, black metal style, even 1994’s slower Suomi Finland Perkele. In any event, I didn’t pick up another I.N. album until last years’ mightily impressive live recording, Death Comes in 26 Carefully Selected Pieces, an album that perfectly captured the striking brutality this Finnish band manages to deliver on stage. Basically, my interest in the band was rekindled, so when I saw Pro Patria Finlandia in our queue, I gobbled it up immediately.
On the surface Pro Patria Finlandia delivers the goods. It’s fast, faster, and fastest. From track 1 to track 14, the Nazareneans streak through songs faster than The Flash racing home to take a liquid dump. And it’s all done very carefully. There’s not one missed chord, not one misfired roll, not one ill-fitting note. And while I can certainly tip my hat to these miscreants for playing their respective instruments with such speedy precision, the bulk of the material on this record ends up whipping past without much to grab on to. The previous live album had a lovingly putrid layer of grit about it that really channeled the dirty, punkish, blackened thrash metal attack I thought this band had mutated their sound into. Pro Patria Finlandia is delivered too cleanly in comparison. I have a feeling I would have been much more impressed had the band walked into the studio, picked up their instruments and hacked straight through each track in one take. Strike the fucking set and call it a match. They’re obviously talented enough musicians to do it, but instead they opted to polish the shit off the tank and deliver an album that sounds more like a Destruction record on speed than a dirty, fucked up Impaled Nazarene album.
Despite their sheen, the first five cuts are actually pretty damned solid. “Weapons To Tame A Land” and “One Dead Nation Under Dead God” both strike low blows quickly , with the latter sticking in the brain harder because of the catchy chorus. The second track, “Something Sinister”, has an absolute buzz-saw opening riff that’ll open your arteries like a bloody slip-and-slide for the rest of the song to slosh down. Track 3, “Goat Sodomy”, has an amazingly heavy bass lick in the beginning that’d slap the fucking silly right outta Les Claypool, and later features a breakdown reminiscent of early Macabre material. Unfortunately, the remainder of the album (with the exception of the surprisingly melodic, tiny instrumental, “Leucorrhea”) tears past nearly unnoticed. Believe it or not, I think this band would actually benefit from dropping one guitarist. The riffing on this record creates a wall of noise that camouflages what I think is one of the highlights of this band - Mikael’s amazing bass work.
Maybe I’m the lone sailor on the ship that no longer thinks just being the fastest fuckers on the planet is extreme, but if you like your metal driven at the speed of light, maybe this is just the record you need to grease your gears. Unfortunately, I think it’s better suited for diehard fans only.
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Death Comes In 26 Carefully Selected Pieces (Live)
8/23/2005 Impaled Nazarene
All That You Fear