Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Fear My Thoughts - Hell Sweet Hell CD Review

Before I even get into the actual review I would just like to take this moment to make a public service announcement to the entire metal and metalcore scene:

We don’t need any more stupid ass, completely pointless, time wasting intros at the beginning of your albums. Sure, you think you’re “setting the tone” or “building up to the first song” or something along those lines but, in fact, all you manage to do is annoy listeners and make them immediately hit the next button every time they turn on your cd. So kill those intros. Thank you.

After you wade through the 56 second intro of random ambient noise and muted whispers, Fear My Thoughts jump right into “Windows for the Dead”, the opening track for their Lifeforce debut, Hell Sweet Hell. It was a quality choice to put as the opening track since it showcases everything that Fear My Thoughts will be doing throughout the rest of the album, mainly pounding out heavily European influenced, double bass pounding, melodic metal.

Throughout the course of the album, Fear My Thoughts vary their musical attack between a balanced combination of the aforementioned styles, strong Euro-metal tracks, straight ahead metal songs, and crunchy metalcore. They’re easily at their best when combining all of these aspects into one song, but when they focus primarily on only one of their varied influences, things start to break down.

The weakest songs are those that heavily embody their Euro-metal side, simply because they don’t know how to vary that type of approach from song to song. Each strong Euro-metal passage feels extremely similar to every other one on the album, much like many of the moments where an attempt is made at traditional metal guitar licking—-there just isn’t enough variation.

When Fear My Thoughts start to let their sound expand to encompass small additions to their core sound, such as the electronics on “Ghosts of Time” and “Dying Eyes”, the groove-oriented approach on “The Fighting”, or the brooding, slow-paced structure of “Trying to Feel” the band comes off highly listenable. Each of these songs highlights some of the band’s finer moments on Hell Sweet Hell. The unfortunate part about this is that it makes the other songs on the disc feel subpar, or pedestrian, in comparison. Regardless, this is still a fine European influenced metal release that will delight many fans of the genre.

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