Release DetailsLABEL N/A
RELEASED ON 1/15/2007
posted on 2/2007 By:
While entirely competent and talented musicians, the five men that comprise one of the seven groups that identified as Adversary (as recognized by the wonderful people over at Metal-Archives, of course) hardly produce anything groundbreaking on this incredibly solid but underwhelming demo. Their blend of melodic death, thrash, and groove metal is certainly well developed, but the vocals generally sell the material short. I often wonder if this band wouldn't be better off picking one of those three genres and sticking with it, because as it stands they are too easily chalked up to an In Flames meets Pantera affair.
Let's get straight to business and talk about the vocals. In attempt to match the hybridism of the music, I suppose, the vocals are similarly schizophrenic. Trouble is, the instrumental transitions are fairly smooth while the transition from death to more blackened vocals doesn't connect in the same way. The blackened vocals are so grating that it makes it difficult to concentrate on the music. What is the point of vocals if they don't complement the music? I keep thinking that this band could use a decent clean vocalist. Nothing soprano-like, just somebody who can really belt out some melodic vocals without sounding like a modern power metal reject. The brief clean vocals in "Heir to a Broken Man" were encouraging, but more grit would have been appreciated. The same could be said about opener "Hedonist." The clean vocals are decent but the contrast with the blackened vocals is too jarring.
As much as I want to push this band into something it's not, I have to face reality and settle on the fact that Adversary are above average songwriters who have a whole career ahead of them to develop their sound and find their comfort zone. While I will probably never return to this demo again, I am fully convinced that it proves, above all, that Adversary write good songs. As far as I am concerned, that is what any good demo should accomplish. Here's hoping the group narrows its focus a little and makes a change or two to the vocals.
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