Only The Dead...

Respects The Living EP

Written by: PP on 09/01/2012 06:13:09

Only The Dead... are a band that should have Danish metal fans interested for two reasons. One, they feature members of Shatterproof, Helhorse, and Whelm among their ranks, all promising bands within their own genres (hardcore, metal'n'roll, and black metal, respectively). And two, their take on the dreaded Danish metal expression - the typical metal sound with no clear identity or subgenre - is far better than the average band within the country. "Respects The Living", which I suspect is meant to be a pun in connection to their band name (in which case it has a grammar error), is their debut EP, and here's what I think about it.

The vocals are your standard scraped screams, but this time just clear enough so you can actually make out the words. Never underestimate the power of that in heavy music. The guitars are metalcore technically speaking, but also lean towards groove, thrash, and melodic death metal at various points during the record, so it's difficult and perhaps unfair to pigeonhole the band like that from the get go. More specifically, the band sounds like a typical band from the Danish metal underground: no real clarity on direction, a mismatch between the brutality of the vocals and the instruments, and a distinct lack of quality musicianship that would keep the listener interested past just a couple of listens.

To be fair, the record is technically proficient, it's just that it has about half an EPs worth of good tracks and rest is filler. The tapped melodies of "Like Prey", the aggressive yet structured approach of "The Wrong Side Of Town", and especially the high-flying scale riff of "Where I Come From", yeah, that's where it's at. "More Than Payback", "Hatecity" and "As Hell", not so much. As a result, "Respects The Living" passes by quickly and relatively unnoticed, although the melodic riffing suggests there is potential for a better rating in the future.

Download: Like Prey, Where I Come From, The Wrong Side Of Town
For the fans of: metalcore leaning on melodeath and thrash
Listen: Myspace

Release date 24.11.2011

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