Sadistic Metal Reviews: Mellow Destruction of Inferior Semi-Technical Trivialities

These random, gimped releases are held in high regard by high-pitched “metal” critics and core pogo stickers. The Death Metal Underground staff takes it upon themselves to scorn and defile them in the name of all that is good in the metal genre.

Cynic – Focus (1993)

Cynic moved on from the promising death/speed metal of their demos to present a queer techno smorgasbord of random jazz fusion on Focus. Funk bass lines mix with techno beats, speed metal rhythmic riffs, bouncy Pantera grooves, ambient interludes, bluesy guitar leads, and shred solos. Tracks are made up of a bunch of random shit thrown onto a tape and held together loosely in a verse-chorus-verse fashion with a common chorus. Vocal styles are similarly a random conglomeration of castrated choirs, Enya, a vocoder, and rasps. Cynic’s composition is awful, atonal, off-key, and gives the mood of a conga line rather than a death metal head trip through time and space like Demilich‘s Nespithe. Cynic is a turtlenecked Pantera for pudgy Berkeley Jazz Institute douchebags wearing blazers over t shirts with pitiful goatees to add a jawline to their corpulent faces. Without the straightforward single-mindedness of a straight, sober, and strongly heterosexual songwriter such as Chuck Schuldiner, Cynic could never hope to equal their contributions to Death‘s Human.

In Flames – The Jester Race (1996)
The Jester Race is the VH1 version of Slaughter of the Soul. In Flames are not a poorly-done, warmed over Iron Maiden or Artillery; In Flames are the type of lame sing-along lite rock that can otherwise be found on the heavier Motley Crue LPs. The closest comparison I can think of would actually be the speed metal influenced Skid Row – Slave to the Grind but In Flames have more estrogen in their bloodstream. Medical literature reports that listeners testicles retreat into the body cavity upon hearing the opening riff. To make an In Flames album one must merely kidnap five relatively sane beer metal fans in Iron Maiden t-shirts, inject them with potent cocktails of various benzodiazepines, and buy them an afternoon of studio time. The Jester Race is what would result. In Flames were not a band who wanted to kill everyone like Metallica in 1983, rather they were the assholes in Animal House with the acoustic guitar attempting to make New Wave of British Heavy Metal music a few years later for born again Christians. In Flames are the Swedish Stryper.

Lykathea Aflame – Elvenfris (2000)
Lykathea Aflame make slightly more sense than Cynic despite their songs also being completely random; compositions on Elvenfris are usually based around a few, sometimes related, riffs with a rhythmic continuity of sorts backing the ambient mid-song interludes. Lead guitar candy sometimes attempts to tie it all together in heavy metal fashion but never succeeds as  Lykathea Alfame play almost completely random, carnival music tekdeaf. Tomas Corn‘s drumming should not be taken as tasteful by the previous comment; rather it is fittingly fluid, bouncing-off-the-wall, batshit insane acid casualty percussion in the manner of Cryptopsy and Absu, which fits the music better than Cynic’s jazz lounge act drumming would. Neither should the leads, which are often completely atonal, shifting into major scales like symphonic cuckholded power metal. The riffing is heavily influenced by Jon Levasseur’s work in Cryptopsy, Central European folk music, and the new age crap favored by Cynic, switching between the three in verse-chorus, soft-hard manner like Opeth, nu-“metal”, and “metal”core. While Lykathea Aflame often have promising ideas, they are never actually well used as the overall mood and music on Elvenfris is that of a schizophrenic, ticked-off Tourette’s sufferer who needs to to be institutionalized. Nobody who pays attention to the music actually being played and arranged could perceive the tracks on Elvenfris as coherent musical compositions of any genre other than free-form fusion bukkake. The flavor savored (Nikki Sixx, Evil D, Metal-Archives autists) will eat this ass up.

Dripping – Disintegration of Thought Patterns During a Synthetic Mind Traveling Bliss (2002)
Dripping are not a lost death metal legend; Disintegration of Thought Patterns During a Synthetic Mind Traveling Bliss sounds like a group of white boy rappers who heard Suffocation and Morpheus Descends, smoked a ton of dope, and decided to make an album full of catchy, proto-deathcore rhythms atop primitive Beherit style riffing. Unfortunately the only thing Dripping were successful at on Disintegration of Thought Patterns During a Synthetic Mind Traveling Bliss is an atmosphere of an acid trip gone wrong similar to Infester but atop random slam songs. Songs mostly go nowhere except for random ambient choruses, hip hop beats, and breakdowns arranged as choruses in a verse-chorus-verse fashion as in nu-metal. Dripping is ultimately a Morpheus Descends for wigger degenerates and Offspring fans.

Stepping slowly past the cold gates of consciousness,
the fact’ry worker waits his release of tension.
From the dark distance, thunder rumbles east to west;
where he goes, he has no need for pretension,
nor for fearful introspection.

From his pocket he removes a blotter,
lifts it to his eyes and solemnly says:
“Oh, my lover, I must spot her,
I am so far from my home, Fez,
that I must soon see, in my mind,
that beut’ful land I left behind!

He swallows soon and grabs his green guitar;
already drop tuned, he is ready for Slipknot.
But for him, his style ranges from near to far;
he adds deep feeling; but, fighting a lot
to refrain from adding serious slam,
he finally snaps: “Let this be not bland!”

Amon Amarth – With Oden on Our Side (2006)
With Oden on Our Side is another Amon Amarth album of mediocre speed metal with riffing incluenced by Metallica, Slaughter of the Soul, and Kreator. Song structures are again rock ‘n’ roll constructions with catchy leads and choruses for drunk frat boys to sing along to. Everything Amon Amarth play here is forgettable, generic, recycled, and nondescript stadium heavy metal. With Oden on Our Side is one of those albums of entirely rehashed filler produced for an experienced band to tour behind and sell something for the label. Listening to it is like reusing tea bags or old coffee grounds found in a trash can. Occasionally riffs are so awful to be metalcore breakdowns as that wasn’t coffee, that was dirt. Amon Amarth ultimately sound like Opeth trying to be Iron Maiden and failing just as hard at playing heavy metal as they did at death metal under the Bloodbath moniker. Amon Amarth need to throw the towel into the shower in hope that they slip on it and crack their skulls open. Being found dead with their brains all over the floor like Dead from Mayhem on the cover of Dawn of the Black Hearts would be the closest Amon Amarth will have ever come to well-written metal music.

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28 thoughts on “Sadistic Metal Reviews: Mellow Destruction of Inferior Semi-Technical Trivialities”

  1. canadaspaceman says:

    You are wrong-a-mundo, about In Flames – The Jester Race (1996).
    It was an enjoyable heavy metal / thrashy / lite death album. The Iron Maiden-ish guitar influence was appreciated.
    Used to play that one a LOT … Shame what In Flames turned into later.

    1. nigstomper88 says:

      It’s pretty average imo. I went back and relistened to it and couldn’t believe how much lame chugga chugga shit there was in it. (see title track.) of course anyone who says the lead guitarwork isn’t sick is up their own asses.

      I do think a lot of the hate it gets is just “political”/fashion. Compare the way Dissection’s second album is uncool now to this old DLA review: “What first seems happy sad rock music turns poignantly evil as it inverts and enunciates a recursing serpentine despair in virulent and corrupted voices as if through the distorted transmission of a sick comic radio script reporting the apocalypse.”

      Watch everyone suddenly get nostalgic about 90s melodeath and pretend they never hated it in a few years when dissonancecore is passe and metalheads stop caring about their insecurity over enjoying melody.

      1. The music is not melodic; there is no overarching melody; it’s like a three year old throwing cupcakes at the fucking wall. Yes, it’s saccharine until you must behold and clean up their handiwork.

        1. I blew my head off like Per Ohlin says:

          Are you filipino, Daniel?

          1. Altarboyz 'N the Hood of Madness says:

            You got my rocks off like Keith Richards, my nggga.

      2. Syphilis says:

        Some Maidencore is decent, but most of it, including In Flames is for males who had insufficient prenatal testosterone exposure.

        1. Mormon Meth Dream says:

          BAAHAHAHAhhaaaa. I don’t read much clever shit around here, but I just literally laughed out loud.

        2. All Diggers Must Nie says:

          The Jester Race has maybe few death metal riffs, the rest is happy-go-lucky, vomit inducing power metal. Just listen to the mid part of “Wayfaerer”, bleh… The acoustic part on “Moonshield” is pretty cool, though.

    2. Kvädare says:

      You are wrong-a-mundo, about In Flames – The Jester Race (1996).
      It was an enjoyable heavy metal / thrashy / lite death album. The Iron Maiden-ish guitar influence was appreciated.
      Used to play that one a LOT … Shame what In Flames turned into later.

      It’s not as bad as says, but I don’t think that it’s good.
      It lacks the invigorating power that makes metal the best music.

  2. HH says:

    thanks for destroying Dripping. That album is trash.

  3. Ivan says:

    Lmao it’s like if underaged edgy /b/tard started reviewing metal music

    1. Vladimir says:

      Lmao too, bro. High five!

      Let’s start our own metal review site where everything is cool and we tell people, like, “yeah it’s not my thing but you might want to listen to it, I dunno”. That’d show ’em!

  4. old DLA fan says:

    All of this is trash. This “metal” stinks! Take out the garbage!

  5. stoicdeath says:

    And this site continues to go downhill. Maybe 1-2 useful or interesting articles out of every 10-15 posted. I’ve found some good bands on here, but in general the quality of posting continues to drop. Articles like this are just as useless as the mainstream metal publications.

    1. Attention Defecate Disorder says:

      New feature: sadistic sadistic metal reviews reviews

    2. Jobi Joba says:


  6. Brat Stevens says:

    Listen to Venom you fucking idiot.

  7. Altarboyz 'N the Hood of Madness says:

    Cynic “Focus” album cover looks like an kangaroo’s anus, up close.

  8. Night Booger says:

    All these albums are fucking gay. It is metal for guys with pony tails, round wire frame prescription glasses, who collect swords and work in an office, also known as total fucking pussies. There is something to coming up and thriving in such mediocre suburban sprawl hell surroundings that fosters a taste for the most generic, surface level pretty, soulless, lifeless, dead fish fuck metal in existence. Hopefully a Miasma of bacterial death sweeps across the many cities and suburbs of the world and leaves piles of bloated corpses for rats and roaches to crawl into and shit out.

      1. Night Booger says:

        I got the shirt and CD along with a few stickers, I wish I could joyfully share this on here without a bunch of stupid fucking remarks to follow, or even on Facebook but it is such a sassy man-queen show especially in the world of metal.

        I really enjoyed metal far more before everyone had social media.

    1. Necronomeconomist says:

      Hi Nite Booger,

      Then what environment fosters discerning, legitimate metalheads (fans of music that’s good enough for you)?

      Oakland? Jacksonville, FL? Long Island & Yonkers? BROOKLYN? LOL

  9. Bub Negril says:

    God this website has become absolute shit, a funny line here and there but sparse metal content that is decent – go back to writing articles for Breitbart with your hipster deplorable buddies Nick Pell and Gavin McInnes, Brent, you deplorable turd.

    1. Night Booger says:

      Gavin McInnes turned heel, you aren’t keeping up with your wrestling stories very well.

  10. Morbideathscream says:

    I don’t agree with all smr reviews, but I find this one very accurate. All these albums are shit. I liked Cynic’s demos but Focus was a bunch of pretentious bullshit. Amon Amarth are probably sincere about their odinist beliefs, but their music is total shit. In Flames is just flat out terrible.

  11. GarbageCoveredCorpse says:

    The only thing I care less about than terrible metal, are Daniel’s equally asinine and boring thoughts on the matter.

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