Spitting With Hatred the Insignificance of Life
posted on 4/2011 By:
Personality is not necessarily one of the typical selling points of quality black metal, as generally the style’s aesthetic is at least partly based around anonymity and an inhuman tone and delivery. Greece’s Dodsferd has always been distinct in that the music conveys a significant amount of personality and character in a sound that remains harsh and obscure, but as 2009’s Suicide and The Rest of Your Kind Will Follow showed, main man Wrath has been gradually pushing his project in a more solemn, serious direction. And while Spitting With Hatred the Insignificance of Life harkens back to the quicker, more varied pace of the earlier albums, its tone continues this trend. Everything about this album, from the song titles to the production to the music itself, feels more polished and professional as well as restrained in approach. While this may seem like a detriment to a project like Dodsferd, that's made its name on primal, primitive rage and intensity, the increased proficiency of Spitting With Hatred’s execution also highlights how far Wrath’s songwriting abilities have come in recent years.
With that said, there’s definitely some of that intangible “oomph” that feels like its missing from this record. The production, while easily the “best” that the project has had to date, also strips the music of some of that feral aggression that was expressed so effectively on past outings, as does the more restrained and traditional vocals of Wrath. But more noticeably than the aesthetic choices is that Spitting With Hatred feels about ten to fifteen minutes too long. The twelve minute “Praying In Vain Under the Shrine of God,” with its lengthy repetitions of fairly simplistic slow-tempo riffs, simply doesn’t purvey the atmosphere or compositional variety needed to make such an epic track effective. And even though fourteen-minute closer “A Pile of Shit: Your Only Hope of the World” contains some beautiful layers of engrossing melody, its edge is still diminished by its excessive length. There are numerous riffs that immediately grab your attention only to become tiring due to their repetitive delivery, and its frustrating considering that it often feels unnecessary to the strength of the song as a whole.
But Spitting With Hatred makes good on most of its bloated length by consistently delivering on the content side of things. The variety of tones and styles evoked has always been a high-point of Dodsferd (except on the previous album, where it was missed), and this variety is the primary driving force that makes this lengthy listen interesting. Wrath’s ear for penning beastly riffs in the grim traditional vein is well showcased here (the opening of “Preaching Death and Destruction” is classic in every sense), but all of the project’s influences are given ample room to flourish. “Your Kingdom Was Built On a Lie” begins with an amusingly blatant nod to 80’s hardcore punk, while icy Norwegian-schooled melodies abound in all the songs but make their presence felt most on opener “The Hate Goes On” and the raging title track. The tighter drum performance and more traditional vocal contributions make the atmosphere feel a little less distinct in some ways, but brash style of the music is still recognizably Dodsferd, and this is what ultimately shines through in the end.
Spitting With Hatred the Insignificance of Life is definitely another solid entry in the Dodsferd catalogue, but it's also an overlong and slightly underwritten affair, and this tends to hamper its listenability in the big picture. For those who really get into this project’s style of black metal and found Suicide and the Rest of Your Kind Will Follow to be lacking in heft and energy, this record should resonate nicely, but I can’t say I’d recommend it to those unfamiliar with the band’s music. Spitting With Hatred does prove that Wrath’s creative well is still impressively full after several years of prolific output; hopefully his next release will condense his rewarding musical efforts into a more condensed, effectively-paced package.
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Suicide And The Rest Of Your Kind Will Follow
Death Set The Beginning Of My Journey
Cursing Your Will To Live
Fucking Your Creation