Saturday, September 14, 2013

Pitch Black Mentality - The Pitch Black Reality

There are rules that music reviewers should follow in order to be credible.

1) Don't talk about your day.  No one cares. Everybody else has theirs which is more important to them than yours.

2) Don't pick a band or artist as a regular whipping boy.  If you choose Nickelback or Justin Bieber what separates you from the other clones?

3) Ignore the opinions of others.  This applies to writing reviews and reading others before setting out on yours.

4) Write about the music and try not to make "I" statements.  It's the music that is important not you.

As rules were made to be broken it's time to break rule 3 and 4 because I read a few reviews of this album before listening to it and the thrash metal lable confused me as soon as I heard the first song "Carpe Demon".  The opening riffs and the vocalist's voice are "Vulgar Display of Power" Pantera and the speed isn't really there for the most part.  The albums title songs follows this track and opens as a speedier thrasher but there's no way that the speed by Pitch Black Mentality can be maintained for over six minutes.  The vocals fall somewhere between Steve Souza and Joey Belladonna but lacking the power of the former and the melody of the latter.  

The promised thrash seems to come via "Tool of War" which promises a "Battery" type thrashing however it's closer to the power metal Helloween were churning out at their peak in the eighties.   In "Red Light" the band succeed in thrashing in three minutes in a half and there's an undeniable Bay Area influence.  "Silent Voice" is more of the same except this song is so much better.   It's a thrasher and there are no attempts at singing although there is a semi-spoken part.  Drums are pummeled at a rapid pace at the outset of "Truth Denied" then melodic power metal vocals come into play now and again.   This would be a great song but this band keep wanting to surprise the listener and  enjoy shooting themselves in the foot. 

Most of the songs on this album are too long and they're not even up to the length of many early of "Death Magnetic" Metallica tunes.  Pitch Black Reality aren't a thrash metal band but a band with elements of thrash and power metal.  The sum of testicles in a vice screams and melodic parts never really fit that well into thrash metal in the 1980's and even though the musical landscape has changed, jigsaw puzzles haven't.

 It's clear that this band are searching for direction.  My advice is to lose the high pitched screams and ditch both the Micheal Kiske and Phil Anselmo attempts and embrace thrash metal in its purist form. 


Beastwars - IV

After over a year off for various reasons, we have returned solely because we wanted to review the new Beastwars album. I really w...