posted on 10/2009 By:
Has anyone noticed that this silly animated metal band from a ridiculous cartoon has a sound that is instantly recognisable? Do you know how many bands try and achieve that? All of them. All of the bands.
Like it or not, Brendon Small is a goofy comedian that has a true talent for metal, which lies both in knowledge and instinct. From the furiously hoarse growls he expels in the name of Nathan Explosion to the wizard-like solos given to Skwisgaar Skwigelf, Small is a multi-talented performer and writer. He actually offers a very competitive style of metal, often overlooked due to the nonsensical nature of where it came from--Metalocalypse. Enter Dethalbum II.
Where Dethalbum was an excruciatingly entertaining and whimsical collection of metal anthems, its musical merit was often drowned out by the laughs and quote referencing from the show's first season. Whilst the whole concept behind Dethklok is a media package (horrible term), Dethalbum II feels like this album was written just for the music, as an album, not the soundtrack to a TV series of dark comic adventures through supernatural metal. Even though it still is.
Despite a slightly more focused direction, the world's seventh largest economy continues to pull a variety of metal styles into their sound, from the purest of death metal intro riffs on “Dethsupport,” which spits and batters its way on to the total groovefest that is “The Cyborg Slayers,” glowingly reminiscent of mid 90's Pantera. “I Tamper With The Evidence At The Murder Site Of Odin” follows diligently with what sounds like Arch Enemy's take on Opeth's “Deliverance” and there is no denying the vocal/guitar hook in the verse of “The Gears".
Being based on the episodic nature of the show, the murder-humorous song titles stay put, but the slapstick nature of the lyrics lie more inconspicuously within the bigger picture. This will be appreciated by the fan who understands the longevity of a novelty, but will frustrate the kind of fan who eagerly awaits the next Steel Panther album.
“Murdermaider II: The Water God” pretty much sums up the difference between Dethalbum II and Dethalbum, sequelling “Murdermaider” with thick, classic Dethklok tones, presented with a musical maturity and compositional delicacy that comes a lot closer to capturing that real euphoria felt from sitting down and listening to your favorite music. This is helped by the production sounding a little less like the clinical creation of a studio. The digitally compressed tint of the guitars, vocals and subliminal synths stay in aid of the inhuman nature of the band and are complimented only by Gene Hoglan's usual machine-like drumming.
Dethalbum simply had to have come before this release, as it is admittedly lost without context, but it also goes to show that Small has definitely still got the riffs and ideas. His creation has as much integrity as the next album on the shelf/page/download queue, so don't miss out on the fun by pigeon-holing Dethalbum II, because the only real way of classifying it is under “D”.
For “Doodily ding dong tick-tock”.
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