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Sinister - The Silent Howling
Review: The Iron Maiden tendencies that swallow this album represent the last step in the process that began with Bastard Saints: in a desire to make their band more popular, Sinister viewed the extreme style they created on Hate as a template into which they could inject the type of material aboveground heavy metal fans enjoyed. The theory was that then they'd be able to be both extreme underground and successful aboveground, but the sad truth is that the two mix poorly, and the end result is successively assimilated by the simplest ancestor of both styles.
With The Silent Howling, Sinister evolve -- remember that evolution includes devolution and extinction in its palette of possibilities -- into melodic heavy metal with death metal techniques, meaning that it has nothing in common with the compositional style and scalar approach of death metal. As a result, their longtime audience turned off and the "new" Sinister was too close to too many other bands to be unique, and so they exited stage left after this rather uninspired release.