We Were Gentlemen
Living Hell

No, you’re wrong; it’s not deathcore, well, not quite.

Despite the artwork, the elaborate band name, the slightly sarcastic song titles (“Cradle Your Filth?” oh Drowningman, this is what you created with your genius back catalog) and the fact that CM has gone all gooey for deathcore makes it all the more surprising that this isn’t Suicide Silence junior. It’s not kooky weirdness either; Living Hell is in fact, a remarkably, almost puzzlingly straight forward album, which unfortunately means that it’s a rather tepid, flat endeavor.

There is none of the over the top heaviness of Suicide Silence, the ridiculous pomposity of Winds of Plague or the outlandish wackiness of Arsonists Get all the Girls. A further detraction is that it doesn’t have that many great songs either. Rather, Living Hell inoffensively, diligently, plods along from track to track, hardly varying the tone, rhythm or pace.

“Cradle Your Filth,” is their video hit (which in fact you can watch already, there’s a video doing the rounds, and failing that they’ve covered “The Beautiful People,” by Marilyn Manson…I hear the clicks already), it’s got a little bit of metal, some chug, some breakdowns and of course, sugary vocal harmonies aplomb (which actually sounds more influenced by the Misfits then Killswitch Engage). Other tracks such as “Evolve,” and “Deep Blue,” unfold similarly, but with not such a high injection of vocal harmonies.

However, on the near 7 minute long “The Insomniac,” a lot more potential is shown as there are some more interesting moments and this time, the pace works a lot better. It crawls along creepily at a doomy pace with the chugs more focused and more seismic then other tracks. Tarpey’s vocals (formerly of Winter Solstice) are more anguished, more piercing, even more convincing here. Another more interesting number but not a complete mould breaker is “Repetitive Desolation,” one of the more up-tempo tracks penned and features some more unusual phrasings on the riffing, but also, some slightly cringing half singing/half spoken vocals.

In the end when you put this in your CD player and hit play you know exactly what you’re getting into. Living hell isn’t an atrocity by any means, I’ve heard far worse, but it’s definitely not pulling me back to hell for more.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Benjamin DeBlasi
November 27th, 2009

Comments

  1. Commented by: Plaguemyheavensblack

    I thought that was the dude from Winter Solstice. Was waiting for someone to confirm that for me. Love this guys voice. Really liked that Fjord album he was on too.


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