Stronger than Steel
[Death/Metal Blade]

Prophanity continue the long tradition of "Göthenborg"-style death metal: Iron Maiden on steroids with a death metal singer. And on that score I can't fault this album (Prophanity's debut) one little bit. It's got the superfast-but-still-classic-styled riffing, soaring harmony/melody sections, great guitar work, song writing/arrangement in the Maiden/Priest 'traditional' style...but still with the harder edge and the death-styled vocals (though this guy sounds a bit like he's singing through a filter of some sort - they have that 'processed' sound). Anyone who's a fan of the "Gothen-death" will love this, because it's done to a T.

And that's exactly my problem with it. There's NOTHING added to the style to distinguish Prophanity from the many other Göthenborg bands coming out. At the Gates had the riffs and songs honed to a 'Slayer-like' razor-edge and had those insane, rabid vocals; Dissection had the many 'black' elements, almost making them a black-death crossover band. Prophanity is, well, just plain-old Gothen-death. Extremely well-done, and great while I was listening to it, but ultimately there's little incentive to play it again over anything else in arm's reach. Great for what it is, I suppose, so the degree you like this will be directly proportional to how much you like the style.

Before I close, though, a consumer alert: "Swedish Steel (The Metallist)", the last song on the CD (the CD-only bonus track - take that you vinyl enthusiasts!) has some extremely-gay sounding guest vocals and such manly lines as "All men ain't made for metal, but all metal is made for men". Makes me wonder....

© 1999 lord vic