Terror
The Damned, The Shamed

This review is going to start off with a weird comparison, but here it goes.

I cannot help but feel that there is a kindred spirit between Terror and Cryptopsy on their latest full lengths. Even if they occupy totally different musical spectrums, there are a series of factors aligning them on their new releases.

First off, both have gone through a multitude of serious line up changes and have only really remained in tact due to their talismanic front men (Vogel for Terror, Mournier for Cryptopsy). Secondly, these were two bands that were greatly revered within their respected environments; I remember that when Terror first blew up, you could not go anyway in Europe without seeing legions of people clad in their shirts.

Finally, Terror, like Cryptopsy lost momentum on the back of their last full length and need to prove that they are not only still relevant, but that they are still leaders in their respected musical environments, especially as the competition and the parameters of quality continue to soar.

To be brutally honest, ‘The Damned, The Shamed,’ surprised me. Given the major label backing, the pressure resting on their shoulders, and above all, the sheer lack of quality that was lacking in their last 2 releases, I thought that Terror would be dead and buried on this one.
Now, this record is not intricate, its not cerebral, it does contain surprises but its more abiding to the paradigm of its environment, but rather then this being a hindrance (so apparent on ‘Rhythm amongst the chaos) it’s catalytic in the band’s return to form.

So what it is that they do?

They take the bare bones of hardcore and defiantly construct a vicious, biting and emphatically defiant collection of songs that are as addictively catchy as they are rallying and uplifting.

The opening trilogy all possess those hallmarks of Terror’s past but are so boisterously amplified that it makes it nigh on impossible not to be sucked into their tectonic vortex of masculinity and testosterone. However, its within these opening numbers that one of the album’s biggest surprises lay, that being the melodic reprise of ‘Betrayer,’ that echoes the classic melodic meanderings of the Cro-Mags and Leeway.
At times Terror do endanger themselves in producing a cheesy hardcore MTV anthem (ala ‘I will be heard,’ or ‘Pride (times are changing)’) such as ‘Never alone,’ which is almost constructed purely for that purpose. Amazingly though, they managed to avert this horrific pitfall and the song actually stands as one of the strongest on this collection. Don’t ask me how, but they pull it off and then build on this pummelling momentum on later numbers, affirming the overall strength of the compositions.

Its not the first time that hardcore band has been at the crossroads of complete mainstream crossover, and undoubtedly it won’t be the last. This time out Terror have shown their worth, they have respected their roots, their heritage and shown that catchy, straightforward songs does not have to be the anathema of heavy music.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Benjamin DeBlasi
July 25th, 2008

Comments

  1. Commented by: swampthang

    when you hear one terror song you heard them all. though maybe vogel should quit and reform Buried Alive pure buffalo harcore whoop whoop


  2. Commented by: FranklinDelanoBluth

    I’d heard there were some Pantera riffs on this one, which really disappointed me, but since you didn’t mention them in your review I can assume they’re not that predominant. Is that right?


  3. Commented by: Adam

    I really enjoy this album. I guess I am sort of late to the Terror boat, but it is a great album in my opinion.

    I have one of their earlier albums, but this one has really caught me. Good, catchy stuff.

    Good review.


  4. Commented by: xBenx

    Yo.

    Sorry for not being active on replying. I just got back tonight from a week’s holiday.

    Franklin, there are NO Pantera riffs whatsoever on this record, but (and this is something in hindsight I should have mentioned), there is a strong modern Hatebreed feel running through, but I think that’s down to the production (handled by…yep, Zeuss)/

    Swampy, man, I’d love to see Buried Alive back in action, but Vogel aint edge no more, and I doubt any of the other dudes, wouldnt be the same therefore…

    Safe Adam, thanks for the comment, but I would recommend (all you guys) check out the new Cold World cd.


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