Last time I caught Xenocide live, it was hard to tell what they were at. It was clear they were tight and had some decent, off-kiler ideas, but the sloppiness of the mix on the day was a bit of a turn off.
Spinning their new cd though, it’s a bit clearer. And in fact, what they’re at is pretty good, give or take.
The production isnt the best, and they’re not the absolutely tightest band ever, as bits of opener ‘The Crucifiction Of Morality’ shows. Its wormy riffs seem double tracked, and dont always match each other, leaving the sound a bit all over the place.
When it’s out of the way though the cd improves exponentially.
‘Rapacious Desire Of Wealth’ is a frantic track, with a nice vocal patter that reminds of George Fisher, albeit about three octaves higher. The riffs though come into their own on here. If those undulating grooves seemed at flaw in the track before, they jolly well fix themselves here: it’s pure Angelcorpse worship to my ears.
Listening closely, there’s a solid drumming performance going on here as well. Not with the blasting, which is somewhat rudimentary, but with the fantastic, tight, double kick undertow. That’s where the band really have it down.
I guess a deeper vocal delivery would really toughen up the band’s sound, but at the same time that’s just a stylistic preference on my part. For many it’ll be fine.
The songs are varied, never hanging around too long on a particular riff, and are energetically played. ‘Retardation Of The Flesh’ hints at more mature (if I can say that) music
to come in the future from the band – it’s darker, more considered, and seems to reach further than the ravenous death metal that makes up the bulk of this.
All in all it’s a good release. Not perfect, and with a bit of work to do on production and delivery generally, but very definitely going in the right direction, and with some superb snippets here and there.
It would be good to have a chunkier, more ‘together’ sound. Here’s hoping they can make an investment for the next one, because it’ll reap dividends.
3.6 / 5 – Earl Grey ::: 15/11/12
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