Company: Streetcleaner Release: 2014 Genre: Death Reviewer: Greg Watson
Aggression by reduction
Southern California death metal act Skinfather make their mark on the scene with "None Shall Mourn". Featuring solid riffing and a unique vocal delivery, this debut is indeed a breath of fresh air in a rather stagnated genre. Foregoing the frenetic picking and riffing most extreme bands follow, Skinfather takes an approach that is aggression by reduction. Though the riffs are a bit slower, the guitar tone and aggressive arrangements lend support for the overall loss of speed. Add in some melodic solos and interludes and you have an incredibly diverse record. The hardest aspect of the album for me are the vocals. They are a mix of hardcore, punk, and death all melded into one cacophonous style. The more I listened, the vocals grew on me but never really stuck or wowed me. Part of that may be the expectation of guttural belches and grunts that was hardly to be found. That being said though, the vocals do follow the band's less traditional approach. This is an album you should definitely give a fair listen, and, if you can go in without any preconceived ideas of what a death metal album should sound like, then you'll be pleasantly surprised.
About this Writer: Greg Watson // Greg Watson has been hooked on the loud and heavy sounds since the summer of 1994 when he first heard the opening notes of "Operation: Mindcrime" by Queensryche. Since then his tastes have expanded and grown like the ever evolving heavy metal tree of genres. He has been an active member of Maximum Metal off and on for 10 years. In his spare time, Greg enjoys deciding the fate of his loyal subjects in the realm of Skyrim and secretly playing air keyboard to "Separate Ways" by Journey when no one is watching. He currently resides in Roanoke, VA with his wife and his metal wannabe beagle.
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