Release DetailsLABEL Lifeforce Records
RELEASED ON 7/8/2008
posted on 8/2008 By:
I have seen reviews of Denmark’s Raunchy mentioning the likes of Soilwork, Fear Factory and Strapping Young Lad as influences so I thought I’d take my first listen to these gateway Danes.
There’s nothing really wrong with Raunchy; the guitars are heavy, the synths tinkle with a bouncy appeal and Jacob Hansen's beefy production is chunky and appropriately heavy. The thing is, I can’t get over the band's musical style - the only words I can come up with are “Death Pop”, “Nu-Death” or “Nu-pop-core”. Raunchy’s style of middling metal just comes across as superficial with vast sweeping metallic generalizations meant to appease the shallow, not quite committed metal masses who think Slipknot are heavy, rather than have some artistic merit. It’s almost like Nu-In Flames on mainstream steroids and without the vague remnants of Gothenburg brilliance.
I know my comments may upset some of you, as it appears these guys have some fans (not Nuclear Blast anymore apparently), and truth be told I can listen to this album loud in my car with the windows down, and tap my feet to the chunky, catchy riffs and hum along to the clean crooned choruses and tinkling synths, but when it comes to depth and metal respectability, Raunchy are no more than a pop band dressed like a metal band with billboard sounds wrapped in underground clothes. Tracks like “Straight to Hell” and “To The Lighthouse” momentarily capture some of their Danish brethrens' thrash based urgency, but on the whole, the album is simple, if catchy verse-chorus numbers like “Somewhere Along the Road”, “The Bash”, “Warriors”, and the title track where I had the next few riffs and moments predicted several bars ahead.
At 54 minutes, Wasteland Discotheque outstays its welcome by about 20 minutes as the band's cover of Rockwell’s “Somebody’s Watching Me” and “A Heavy Burden” seem to be my limit. By the ample finishing point thusly by the time the eight minute closer “The Comfort In Leaving” rolls by, I’m more than ready to move onto some slightly more ‘real’ metal which is a shame, as it might be the album's best track.
All that being said, they have not made a new fan of me, but neither do I hate them. I can respect their choice to go for the large market, commercial appeal, and do it respectably while still appealing to fans of In Flames, Lacuna Coil, Soilwork, Slipknot and such, while still keeping a mainstream sound that acts as a gateway band to far heavier and more importantly, better bands.
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