Don De Necker

Jul 232020
 

American Arson offer up rock n roll hardcore on their album, “A Line In The Sand” released on Facedown Records. Their debut full album release on Facedown is a energetic blast that offers both melody and aggression with a solid rock n roll punch in the face.

Akin to a top fuel dragster staging you just know you in for one hell of a ride from the first track, and when the rubber gets grip the velocity is maintained at times sending ones brain ears in to adrenaline O.D. The music drives with simplicity yet when complexity is demanded Evan Baker and Jesse Gentry musical relationship does a fantastic job at it, digging into the catalogues of both new school and old school hardcore with star studded excellence.

One of my favourite tracks is “Drop Your Draggers”, which does just that mixing up some old school hardcore with new school elements and its driving momentum hits hard like Thor’s Hammer. Its hardcore punk edges I can identify with as a 80’s hardcore punk kid. It’s also quite poetic they used punk as the back bone for a political message. Well done.

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Deathbreaker – “Isolate”

 Posted by on June 30, 2020 at 00:09  No Responses »
Jun 302020
 

I like some good hardcore, get’s the blood flowing, and now being winter down in South Africa and lockdown because of covid 19 added to the mix, to have some energetic music to warm up ones blood is a welcomed retreat from it all. So when I hear the label Facedown mentioned, I sort of relate to it as Christian music’s fraternity of hardcore. So a good place for Deathbreaker to find themselves within.

The energy capsulated in ‘Isolate’ sharpens the edges of the bands hardcore roots driving a more assault driven harder approach than their ‘Disconnect’ release 3 years ago. Right from the start images of hardcore kids in the pit hardcore moshing hit my frontal lobe. Images of crowd chaos abound, guess I am going to have to move the furniture out the way to fully appreciate the aural aggression of Isolate.

As the listener you are brought to the attention of the raw characteristics of the songs, not a single song is marred by the production of the album. Like a good bottle of ketchup when poured, it has substance, and not at all a watered down interpretation of the band, the sound comes across rich and ‘live’ and rich in flavour. Those characteristics set it up nicely in the energy department.

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Cloth – “Axis Mundi” (EP)

 Posted by on June 3, 2020 at 22:02  No Responses »
Jun 032020
 

Well not every day do I get an opportunity to review a black metal band, so it excites me when something like this gets presented to me and allows me to adjust my peripheral for a moment, and all I have is the cold hard facts to work with as presented to me.

So let’s get technical and historical for a moment. Christian black metal is often touted as unblack metal and its origins are largely a disputed one, but it’s safe to say both Australian’s Horde and Norway’s Antestor are the fathers of the genre. Obviously Unblack metal focuses on Christian themes and philosophies. A lot of this genre’s music has adopted unconventional song structures.

So here we got a band by the name of Cloth with their album, Axis Mundi off the label Nordic Mission Productions up under review. Cloth is a musical collective consisting of members of, Stronghold, DALIT and Aspiration. So these Black Metal rockers take you through a journey of the hopelessness of humankind we all feel. It confronts what has led us to where we are, and to what end we all are coming closer to – with a strong philosophical and allegorical backbone behind it all.

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Skillet – “Victorious”

 Posted by on May 17, 2020 at 09:24  No Responses »
May 172020
 

There is no doubt that Skillet has a great formula that seems to work for them in terms of reaching the masses and thus their significance in the rock world plays an important role from a Christian perspective. I am not the biggest fan of their music but I certainly respect what they have been able to achieve within the industry. I hated their debut album and in fact I only really started giving them the benefit of the doubt at around Comatose which was released in 2009, which by then I could tolerate them and today their latest releases are something I can get by on. Their success in the Christian charts has been continuous for the past two decades and their ability to stride successfully between the secular and Christian music world is noteworthy. Victorious is their tenth album and though sounding at times similar to their previous release Unleashed I think overall it is a little more polished. Also think a little more emotional attention was given to it. However in some ways for me it comes off as a continuation of the last release, like a part 2, or disc 2 of a larger album release. Like they had all these songs and divided it over two releases. Again that said there is allot of emotional investment that seeps through by the band on this one that though similar to Unleashed does give it some distance as the songs have a more personal engagement.

The stylistic approach of Skillet is a working formula, and I guess don’t mess with what works for you, and their melodic catchy songs have caught the hearts of thousands. The songs are generally pick me up’s with anthem driven lyrics and kids and adults alike can sing along with relative ease, which works well with their mission based statement they represent.

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May 122020
 

Parts of this review’s contents comes out of a conversation I had with Dale Thompson through Facebook messenger on the 5th of May 2020 where I put forward a couple of questions to him regarding the release. Therefore it’s a longer review than I would generally write for an album.

There are certain things in life I will admit that get me quite excited, one being the acquisition of new music; or the sound of an awesomely tuned American V8 muscle car. This excitement includes the opportunity to review another project of which Dale Thompson has been involved with. Therefore it will as no surprise to the reader that I am a huge fan of Dale’s vocals and regard him as one of metal music’s top vocalists, and certainly one of music’s more stylistically original vocalists in the industry. Also if you look beyond his contributions to Bride you will discover his not afraid to explore new ground in music. Sure those projects might not be everyone’s cup of coffee but nevertheless each project on their own deserves a level of respect and highlights the versatility and depth of Dale’s creativeness as a well rounded musician. So as I said I was a little fan giddy when receiving the latest project to pass through his hands, but however this does not mean this project gets off lightly at all. In fact it means I really dial in deep to give you the reader the most honest and down the line review I can because of my musical expectations of the man and the individuals that are involved alongside him on this project.

The new projects is called The Thomas Thompson Earth Project and the debut album from this talented group of musicians under review is entitled, ’Dreamland Lovecraft’. Since Garret Thomas is the music writer and composer, mixing engineer and mastering engineer on this project, and that Dale’s grandfather was Thomas Thompson, Dale felt it would be fitting to use Garret’s last name and his grandfather’s name in combination with Thompson.

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