Friday, August 21, 2015

Krisiun - Forged in Fury

Teasiun Pleasiun

One of the most universally praised albums in all of metal history is... well not a Krisiun album.  October Rust by Type O Negative is held in high regard by virtually every fan of the band and even people who couldn't really care less about their genre.  It has a legendary opening track, with nearly 40 seconds of total silence before the band bursts out in laughter, introduces themselves, says they hoped you like the joke, and then the album starts.  It's a shitty joke, to be perfectly honest, but I can't help but feel like Krisiun owes us something similar for this album.  Before the first track truly starts, I want to hear silence before the band starts laughing and says:

"Hi, I'm Alex"

"I'm Moyses"

"And I'm Max"

*all together* "And we just don't give a shit anymore!  Hope you enjoy this album we shit out without actually writing any songs for!"

Because damn, Forged in Fury is a fucking bore.  I have a habit of lumping Krisiun in with the group including Cannibal Corpse, Vader, and Motorhead, where they really don't do anything new with each album, but they're so good at what they do that they don't really need to experiment with their sound.  In truth, every Cannibal Corpse album sounds like "a Cannibal Corpse album", every Motorhead album sounds like "a Motorhead album", but every Krisiun album sounds like "Conquerors of Armageddon".  For as consistent as the band is, it becomes more and more apparent with each subsequent album that they really blew their wad with that 2000 masterpiece.  They really and truly only have three great albums, with Black Force Domain being one of the most unruly and insane albums released in the mid 90s, Conquerors of Armageddon laying the blueprint for their signature blend of high speed, groovy, and punishing stop-start riff onslaughts, and fluking out with Southern Storm basically being Conquerors but better.

Forged in Fury?  Nah, this is pretty much interchangeable with any of their mid 00s albums.  It's truly the sound of a band on autopilot, just going into the studio and doing what they know how to do, but not really applying themselves towards the goal of getting better with each try.  It's like they figured out what they did best and just never bothered honing their skills.  The technical skills and execution are serviceable enough, with their jarring shifts from frenzied blasts and bassy tremolo assaults to pounding, Bolt Thrower style grooving being just as capable as always, but none of these songs contain any riffs or breakdowns or vocal patterns or solos or memorable moments or anything to really distinguish themselves from each other.  The album is a faceless blur of nothing-riffs.  It's just not particularly interesting or well written, which is unfortunate because that's the hardest criticism to explain.  There aren't any memorable blasts of intensity like the intro to "Combustion Inferno" or the main riff to "Sentenced Morning", it's just incessant tremolo abuse and blasting with no further thought put into it.  I don't even really know how to elaborate further, every song sounds like the song before it, and they all sound like "Abyssal Gates" from fifteen years prior except not as hungry and exciting.

I think one of the biggest problems is simply that the songs have been getting longer as of late, with this album being nearly an hour long and having four songs break the six minute mark (with another one being within seconds of that cutoff).  There simply aren't enough ideas at play to justify the songs being as lengthy as they are.  You get every idea the song will introduce within the first minute and that's it, nearly every track could be a minute or two shorter and it'd greatly improve the album.  This has been their issue for a while now, the three brothers just seem woefully incapable of trimming the fat.  The best song is easily "The Isolated Truth", and it's unironically the shortest one (though the fact that it's basically just a rewrite of the stellar "Combustion Inferno" certainly helps its standing with me).  In fact, the only two songs on here I'd ever see myself listening to again are that one and "Oracle of the Ungod", and it's for basically the exact same reason.  They're the two shortest songs and they're the most interesting interpretation of their stop-start brutality that's dominated their sound for the past decade.  That's it, they're well written and well executed versions of what the rest of the album tries to do but fails because it's too busy repeating itself.

I'm glad they've solved their production woes, as this is as heavy and thick as the previous two albums, but the actual content is disappointingly lacking.  If Forged in Fury is the first Krisiun album you hear, then you'll love it to death.  All of the ideas and quirks that have made the band relevant and respected enough for me to still care about despite thinking they're overall pretty meh are here like all the rest of the albums, but they're running on fumes at this point.  Nothing breaks out, grabs you by the balls, and hurls you against a wall like "Ravager" or "Slaying Steel" did years and years ago.  It's one dimensional, which used to be one of their greatest strengths, but it's now pretty heftily their biggest problem.

RATING - 45%

PS: "Milonga de la Muerte" is a cool acoustic bit, but it's stupid to end the album on what feels like an interlude as opposed to a true outro.

No comments:

Post a Comment