|Review: Hellrazor - In the Wild|
|In the Wild|
Label: Heaven and Hell Records
Year released: 2008
Genre: Thrash Metal
Review online: January 11, 2009
Reviewed by: Mike Henn
for:In the Wild
Rated 3/5 (60%) (2 Votes)
While it is rather refreshing to hear a new Thrash band that doesn't fall under the shameless throwback umbrella, it's far more frustrating when it is so pedestrian. And with that said, while they are indeed Thrash, they have much more in common with Grave Digger than Exodus. The main vocalist is a dead ringer for Boltendahl when he sings in his deep gruff that fills most of the record, and that may be where the main reason for the comparison comes from, but it doesn't mean that In the Wild doesn't contain many high speed, double bass filled riff monsters that wouldn't sound out of place on Excalibur. The thing that worries me about this is that despite the Grave Digger similarity, they can't seem to emulate the German's ability to fill an entire LP with engaging, intense, enjoyable songs.
Don't get me wrong, there are a few standout tracks like "Hellrazor", "3am", and "Ride or Die", they don't excuse the clinical retardation of crap like "Stacked Up". In the Wild is another victim of what I say of a lot of music that I don't end up liking too much, and that's that they aren't memorable. To me, memorability and/or replayability is the most important aspects to music. I find absolutely no point in spending money or wasting time listening to something that you won't remember or will never want to hear again. I'll listen to Hellrazor occasionally in the future, I'll tell you that, but never the entire album. There's no fucking reason to, just listen to the last two tracks and then forget about the rest of the stuff here. Stuff like the Nevermore-esque "Darker Days" is so far removed from the fury of "3am" that it almost sounds like a different band. It's sad that a band with so much potential had to churn out such a boring album, but there is always room for improvement on the next release.
But I must give credit where credit is due, and I must admit that the guitarist is fantastic. Every riff is solid at worst and all of the leads are incredible. He doesn't shred your face off Michael Romero style, but he knows how to pull out a fast, melodic, and most importantly FITTING solo into every song that sports one. There isn't any noodling purely for the sake of noodling to be found here. Every note has a place and a purpose, and the concept of restraint is something that many young'uns need to understand.
Unfortunately, that's one of the few bright spots to be found here. I'll give all of the guys credit for their playing ability, but very little for their songwriting ability. I maintain my stance that music that holds no replay value holds very little value at all. Hell, it doesn't have to be catchy to make me want to hear it again (see: 1349, Watain), it just has to retain something that will make me say "Now THAT is a good fucking album". Hellrazor doesn't suck, keep that in mind. Nay, they are actually quite good on a technical standpoint considering they know how to not fill up songs with pointless interludes and extended bass solos and Chinese choir choruses and whatnot. The only problem is that they suffer from the opposite problem. There isn't enough here to stick with you, and it's a shame. I don't know precisely what to say other than "Please... make BETTER songs". I don't think they need to be faster, catchier, more technical, more intense... just... better.
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