Haunted By The Fact They Didn’t Use To Suck
What the fuck? Seriously. What the shitting fuck? Remember Made Me Do It? Thrashy death metal, frantic yet memorable guitar work, Marco Aro‘s powerful vocal delivery, metronome-tight drum work. Well, take that thought & bin it. Unseen kicks off with Never Better which would have been better placed in a Nu-Metal’s Worst Moments list than the back catalogue of a band with so much pedigree they make Triple H look like feral, mixed-breed runt. To be fair, I can’t remember listening to anything they’ve put out since One Kill Wonder. The fact that I have a couple of those interim albums suggests two things. Firstly, they were nowhere near as good as OKW & secondly, they were nowhere near as awful as Unseen.
No Ghost is more reminiscent of Clutch. Groove-laden, bluesy hard rock doesn’t suit Dolving. In fact, it doesn’t suit any of the band. What the fuck were they smoking when they wrote this shit? Seriously. I’m going to have to use the word seriously again because I’m deadly serious. What the fuck happened to The Haunted? Catch 22 is a bad pastiche of Deftones meets Faith No More. The Bjorlers are having an identity crisis. The progenitors of melodic death metal have realised that whilst they created one of the most distinctive sounds of the ninties, other shit was going down & now they want to have a go at it. Imagine Jonathan Davis having a crack at the Gothenburg sound, Kurt Cobain‘s gangsta rap album. The cringe factor is comparable.
The Skull sees Dolving‘s seminal death vocals being replaced with a poor Maynard James Kennan impression by a pre-pubescent child whilst The City is screamo to a level so bad, I am unaware of any reasonable comparisons. There is one good harmonic on Them. That’s it. The single positive point of this whole album lasts less than a second. There’s an argument that this is a progressive album. That it might be a bit hit & miss as they try out new ideas. Well, it’s all miss & it makes Unit 731′s idea of the word experimental seem reasonable & humane.
I’ve thought about this for over an hour now & I really can’t work it out. What was going through the heads of some of the greatest minds in melodic death metal when they thought the world needed an incoherent, second rate genre-mash of an album? Maybe they figured they’d get in on the ground floor of the inevitable groove/nu-metal revival. Yes, that’s the feeling of dread you’ve all had for the past 6 months. It’s coming back with vengeance & it’s going to eclipse deathcore, djent & screamo. If that was the plan, then I wish them best of the luck with the sea of 12 year old pussy they’ll soon be swimming in. As for me, I’m digging in for another 5 years of mediocrity, embarrassment & baggy jeans. I’ve got my Triptykon vinyl & a thermos full of Asda Smart-Price gin.
Do your blood pressure a favour, skip this irredeemably awful contribution to the world of music. R.I.P. The Haunted.