20 Watts


Releases of the Week: Fear Before & Kill The Client by subsonicd1sc0rd
October 28, 2008, 12:14 am
Filed under: Releases of the Week | Tags: , ,

 Fear Before – Fear Before

A self-titled album is a special entity; not only does it reflect an important milestone in a band’s career, it tends to define the sound that the group will be known for in the future. Fear Before have made an extremely bold statement with their first effort since dropping “The March Of Flames” from their name, but loyal fans mustn’t fret because the epic quality to their music is still intact. Nonetheless, it would not be a Fear Before album without experimentation and there is no doubt that Fear Before is quite different than previous releases, taking the atmospheric quality of 2006’s The Always Open Mouth and injecting a newfound, organic rawness into the mix.

One of the most well known aspects of Fear Before’s music has always been the dual vocals of front man David Marion and guitarist Adam Fisher. On this album, they have perfected this delivery with a stunning array of vocal styles including dark, haunting melodies and desperate, throaty screams. Although the heavy portions are not nearly as punishing as older work, they are incorporated more naturally; for example, the last track entitled “Review Our Lives (Epic)” has some very intense moments, including a climactic outro that builds up and unleashes as Marion shouts “It’s now or never/Make it right/Make it now”.

This aggression, although apparent, does not make up the bulk of the music on Fear Before. Fear Before are an undoubtedly progressive band with many different tricks up their sleeve and endless examples of their ability to push boundaries exist on their new release. The use of vocoder effects, acoustic guitars, choral backing, and subtle sampling are just a few of the ingredients that make up the beautifully layered production. While it may take a few listens to adjust to the new Fear Before, it is absolutely worth it, as these talented musicians have created an incredible piece of art.

Kill The Client – Cleptocracy

I love grindcore, and while the formula to create a grind masterpiece may seem rather straight forward (blast-beat drumming, simple, down tuned riffs played extremely fast, growls and high-pitched screaming, short song lengths), it is very rare that I am able to associate a newer act with legends such as Napalm Death, Carcass and Terrorizer. Kill The Client are an exception. There is no possible way to listen to Cleptocracy and pass it off as a mediocre attempt; it is destructive, pissed, and true to the essence of extreme music. 

Kill The Client blaze through eighteen tracks of politically charged violence at an alarming rate, bringing the total album length to just under twenty-three minutes… now that’s grind! There is absolutely no opportunity to catch your breath as madman Brian Fajardo plays the drums like he is fighting for his life in an epic, blast-beat battle. Are you intimidated? Maybe? Just a little? Give the track “Christian Pipebomb” a chance and see if you can handle it. There are no real surprises here, but it is quite the refresher to hear a grind band as convincing as Kill The Client in 2008.  Oh yeah, the last track is a cover of Infest’s “Terminal Nation” and it rules! 

– Jeremy Garber 

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