|Review: Cholera - Enslaved Humanity|
Year released: 2009
Genre: Death Metal
Review online: February 21, 2010
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Rated 3.87/5 (77.33%) (15 Votes)
Cholera hail from Ottawa, Canada and perform some interesting progressive death metal. Only two tracks on this first EP, and the shortest one is nearly 10 minutes in length – so if you suffer from Attention Deficit Disorder (that's A.D.D., for those of you who actually have it), you may have some problems focusing on this stuff. ;) It took me a few listens to really start liking what I was hearing here: there is a lot going on in the 21 minute lifespan of this EP. The backbone is some... "lightweight" death metal, in that it's not of the heavier nor speedy all-guns blazing variety, but more of a crunching, kind of stop-and-go, slow to mid-paced offering that often walks the line near the border of thrash.
Machine-gun style riffs are quite present here, but Cholera throw in a lot more. There's a cool symphonic-style passage that sounds like something off a classical soundtrack to a dark sci-fi thriller – you get that roughly half way through "Road Into the Fire" and even though it's night and day compared to the rest of the song, I found that it blends in very well, though the return to metal is a bit sudden. There are a few hints of Middle Eastern melodies found here as well, but the guys aren't abusing this (unlike some other band I reviewed recently.) It's pretty subtle stuff at times. The guitar work can get a little "trippy", with the machine gun-style fast crunchy riff complemented by some simultaneous hectic guitar work, the combination of which can feel a bit like a mindfuck at times. They even throw in a few epic vibes here and there, some passages of which will make you think of ancient armies marching toward battle (or maybe I've just been watching too many of those movies lately – but still. ;))
The vocals... That's what is a bit of a turn off at times, and especially on the first couple of listens. They're somewhat clean for the most part, a little low, but there's sometimes an almost mechanical feel to them that I'm not too fond of. There's also a more growly style used and that sounds much better here, a better fit for the music.
Overall, this is quite an impressive little debut EP, and it'll keep you busy for a while. I'm listening to it again as I write this, and I still hear things that I hadn't noticed before, and I hear some other things differently. Even more impressive is the fact that the guys were only 16 when they recorded it – I think it will only get better as they gain experience. Enslaved Humanity is interesting and different, but keep in mind that it may take a few listens before it clicks.
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