If you read my review of AriaТs "Kreshchenie Ognem" (shame on you if you didnТt), you probably remember that a friend of mine sent me a bunch of albums from Russia. Well, the next band IТll review for you are the interestingly named Horned Necrocannibals. Their equally interesting entitled album, "Bitches, Sex and Ptomaine" is the first effort I have ever heard of Russian death metal, and I have to say that I approve of it.
The album cover is kind of similar to NunslaughterТs "Waiting to Kill Christ" (well, at least if you look at it from far away and use your imagination), but instead of a bizarre monster, we get to see half-naked nurses, funky skeletons, other weird creatures and lots of breasts. And a logo thatТs almost impossible to understand, even if you know the Cyrillic alphabet. The songs are sung both in English and Russian, so we get to read the titles of some of the songs in the two languages. But for this particular review, I kept them all in English, so everyone who reads this (even the unbelievably retarded) gets them. ThereТs also a huge obi strip which covers the CD case and includes info about the band and the album, similar to the ones that can be found on some Amorphis, Mortician and Nile records.
In case you donТt realize by looking at the art, band pictures, their names and song titles that the band don't take themselves too seriously; then you have to hear the last track of the album to do it. Usually I never start talking about the last song of a record, but this time I have to do so, because itТs safe to say itТs one of the most original things I have heard in quite a while.
ItТs a medley of cover songs that were recorded "live in Antarctica" in front of "thousands of raging penguins". I mean, thatТs so silly itТs almost actually genius! There are a bunch of songs tied in the middle of MaidenТs "Number of the Beast", and I have to say that IТm amazed by the way they did them. The singer adapts his voice to each song, and the musicians make the transitions sound perfect. There are songs by Metallica, Megadeth, Sex Pistols, AC/DC, Pantera, Sepultura and some others. ItТs a fun thing to listen to it and identify all the bands being covered.
But the rest of the songs are just as good and interesting, being basically well played death metal tunes, catchy and with lots of groove. All the instruments can be heard distinctly, and itТs obvious that the musicians know exactly what they are doing. The guitars have a nice rhythm, with lots of melody, yet become brutal when itТs necessary. The bass and drums are very competent as well, giving some variations to the songs to keep them interesting all the time.
The vocals are sort of in the traditional guttural growling style of the genre, but not low enough to be impossible to understand. At least when they sing in English you have a slight idea of what the singer is saying. And every now and then there are some changes with shriek-like vocals, like in "Rotting in the Sun", which reminds me a bit of Finntroll, in the vocal and music departments.
This band has a very healthy sense of humor, and it makes a fun and interesting listen. And even if their brand of death metal is nothing amazingly special, they play it better than a shitload of other bands out there. You should definitely check them out whenever you can.
Rating: 7.5 headbanging penguins out of 10.
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