Urkraft
The Inhuman Aberration

Don’t you hate it when a band makes a slight tweak to a well-established style and claims to be revolutionizing a genre? Urkraft claims that their “thoughtful addition of keyboards” modernizes the death-flavored thrash style that they play. In all honesty, that and the matching outfits on the promo photo gave this record a couple of strikes before I gave it a good listen.

Urkraft, which apparently means “primitive force” in Danish, released their debut record Eternal Cosmic Slaughter on Germany’s Cartel Media in 2004 after a string of demos and compilation album appearances. That led to a deal with Earache for this release. There’s very little other information on the band available as the bio on their Web site only says they’ve been “underground for a while” and are now, of course, ready to conquer the world.

Maybe. Maybe not.

It’s obvious from the beginning that Urkraft have honed their chops well, studying classic thrash and death outfits as well as their more modern counterparts. The result is a record where you’ll hear moments of classic Metallica, moments of Carcass, moments of Death, moments of Dew-Scented, but the music never rises to the level of those influences.

True, the keyboard lines are a new touch to this style, and they’re done tastefully, so as to not take away from the power of the style, and occasionally, they provide some nice atmospherics, as on “This Great Summer” and the great opening riffing of “Open the Gate.” But groundbreaking, it’s not.
 

The Inhuman Aberration offers up a 10-song collection of technically sound and enjoyable thrash/death hybrid with an occasional “wow” moment. More often than not, though, the listener is left feeling like he’s heard this all before – many times. So, while I enjoyed the record as I listened to it, I doubt I’ll remember it a week from now. Urkraft just don’t do enough to set themselves apart from the rest of the crowd. That’s ultimately the difference between sounding like one of those bands I mentioned earlier in the review and actually being one of them.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Fred Phillips
June 29th, 2006

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