Satanism. Sickness. Solitude. (Reissue)

Written by: PP on 22/12/2008 23:58:15

Occasionally the name of the artist says it all, because the only plausible thoughts I can garner on Belarus-based Sick and their album "Satanism. Sickness. Solitude" is that their vocalist sounds fucking sick, and I don't mean that in the "fuck yeah, that was a sick jump with the snowboard" way, I mean it in the "dude you vomited on my balcony during Christmas Luncheon, that's fucking sick" type of way. He has a coarse growl--not guttural, just coarse--that leaves the listener wondering if he'll ever even speak again once 2008 comes to close. You know, the throat-piercing kind, the one that's made out of pure throat-shredder should anyone inexperienced ever attempt to replicate it. Not that this is a problem though, because in most cases, and what SHOULD also be the case here, the singer/growler should attempt to fixate his vocal chords to somehow suit the music, be it melodic growl, a nice scream, or a clean voice for that matter.

So anyway, the rest of Sick's music can be described as some sort of sick (I'm still on fire ;D) post-apocalyptic industrial black/doom metal that draws as much influence from early Nine Inch Nail-esque electronic elements as they do from painstakingly slow song structures akin to doom metal, with the exception that the songs rarely surpass the three and a half minute mark. Now for the majority of the album, their expression is rather anonymous, resulting only in distantly buzzing guitar riffs and weird industrial soundscapes (think Pain's "Rebirth" here) that don't really give much to the listener. Pretty much the only exception is the awesome "Hellsicker" track, where the vocalist's coarse, SICK (for the third time) voice finally comes across as more than just useless noise, because his "Hellllsickkeeeeer" growls are memorable and contrast nicely the sudden pace-change of the instruments into death-metallish shredding and breakneck speed drumming. But this is also the only reference point on the record for the listener, the rest of the songs merely blend in together into a meaningless lump of vomit. Sorry for the imagery, I just couldn't resist.

What bothers me the most about "Satanism. Sickness. Solitude" is that the band clearly displays stone cold seriousness throughout the record. You can't pretend to have a title as ridiculous as this, then throw in one of the worst vocalists I've heard, and still expect anyone to buy your 'evil satanist vibe' or whatever it is that you're trying to portray here. Little more tongue in cheek attitude and things will be much better.


Download: Hellsicker
For the fans of: Pain, Emit, In Vino Veritas
Listen: Myspace

Release date 01.11.2008
Spinefarm Records/Universal

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