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Old 03-21-2009, 07:30 PM
The Maple Syrup Baptist Offline
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Default Re: The Metal Legion v2.0



Album: Helping The World To See
Band: Vehemence
Year: 2004
Genre: Melodic Death Metal


Tracklist:
1. By Your Bedside
2. Kill For God
3. Trinity Broadcasting (Know Your Enemy)
4. To The Taste
5. You Don't Have To Be Afraid Anymore
6. Alone In Your Presence
7. Spirit Of The Soldier
8. Darkness Is Comfort
9. What Could Go Wrong?
10. We Are All Dying
11. Her Beautiful Eyes



"Helping The World To See" by Vehemence, the group's sophomore album, is a satisfying slab of Melodic Death Metal, firmly rooted in Death but never afraid to show a bit of heart. The album is full of gutteral growls, furious snare and double bass attacks, and some vicious riffage, just as you'd expect from a Death Metal band. There's nothing new here, but rather interesting is the chemistry; Vehemence is very convincing.

By Your Bedside opens the album with a bouncy riff and eases you in. The riffs are catchy and will stick with you and have you asking "why hasn't this been done yet?". That is an accurate description of most of what follows, for better or worse (but usually better).

For the most part, the songs twist and turn between dark ferocity and some truly beautiful melodies. The Melodic parts come naturally and the Death parts hit as hard as any other band in the genre. Blastbeats are satisfying and not overused, the excellent guitarwork is sharp, precise, and locked in well. Nathan Gearhart wanders through the standard Death Metal belch and some harsh barks. He isn't the most original vocalist to come along within the genre, but he gets the job done and writes some fun vocal lines to boot.

Vehemence puts a ton of effort into each song, and it really shows; some of the writing here borders on genius. What Could Go Wrong? has a riff that's all but guaranteed to go down as one of the catchiest in Death Metal; Spirit Of The Soldier is as epic as it sounds, layering some great harmonies over fast-paced percussion assaults. We Are All Dying might be the best one here; incredibly, within it's complex riffing and dynamic arrangement, it's full of great hooks and stands as the song that best defines Vehemence.

Some of the songs sound similar in parts, and the lyrics and vocals, while fitting, are nothing to write home about. The music, however, is the excelling factor here, and there really isn't a bad song to be found. "Helping The World To See" is an album I'd easily recommend to anyone who swings on the harder, darker side of Metal and wants a fun, groovy, catchy Melodic Death Metal album with depth you wouldn't expect. It's not original, but it's solid, and for the excellent writing and catchy riffing, this one is money well spent.



Quality: 6.5
The tone is dark and murky and definitely fits the music. Some of the leads are a bit too low in the mix though. Hearing the bass is nigh-impossible.

Musicianship: 8
Vehemence play hard and show off some strong skills. Impressively, everything is precisely executed and locks in tightly without losing the raw feel of Death Metal. The guitarists net every note with a pinpoint precision and the drummer never misses a beat. Too bad the limitless riffing comes with a limited vocalist.

Writing: 8.5
Catchy is a term not necessarily associated with Death Metal, but these riffs will get stuck in your head. Blastbeats are tasteful and plentiful but not overdone. Some arrangements are simply terrific, but the lyrics aren't anything you'll wanna quote, and the vocal lines are standard Death Metal fare (albeit with more hooks).

Ingenuity: 5.5
Their sound nor their style is anything new. Nathan Gearhart is mostly a throwaway vocalist and does nothing to stand out. Thankfully, the riffing is much more memorable than many of their contemporaries.

Overall: 8.2 (82%)
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