Erotic Never Sleep Again
By Marcus Pan
The thing with continuing to record with a
band is that you get better as you move on. You continue to improve, you
improvise, you increase your skills. In short, grasshopper, you grow to be one
with your craft. Or do you?
Erotic's previous CD, A Million Empty Lives, was
written up in Legends
#141. DJ Mort, about this previous
album, said back then that if you "are looking for some good well recorded
music then you certainly won't find it here." He also summarized thusly: "My
thoughts are this: there are some good ideas bouncing around, but no actual
direction being taken in order to come up with a more tight knit sound. A bit
more practice and a couple of negative reviews may find these boys either
packing it in or coming out a year or two from now to really make us all eat
Now the 2005 release of Never Sleep Again has arrived
and is expected to hit the streets in early June. I'm wondering if I should
break out the ketchup and get to snacking on the words of our previous review.
But, alas, we're still seeing the same thing. The very low budget production
(even with a small amount of cash you can make this sound better). Having to
turn my radio volume up to near 10 so I can hear it some is damned annoying.
Songs like Three Years, for example, have many elements inside which is
normally a good thing, but when they don't mesh well they just come out
sounding sloppy and very amateurish.
The vocals are another thing I can't get past. In most
instances they flatten well below the make-up of the other music.
Prague, for example, has a really good guitar riff on it, but Razor's
flat delivery crush it and the added bubbly programming just makes it come out
sounding like someone forgot to take the tape out of the washing machine while
recording. Likewise the heavy Maiden like Dress in Black opens very
powerfully with well written guitars, keys and percussion all jamming together.
But again the vocals...flat, unfeeling, unsteady at times. I hearken back to my
Witchkrieg review for more on this type of problem.
Cum Again is a cool song I really dig the
melodic keys that open it and the guitars are, as per usual, well played. It
doesn't suffer as badly from the flat vocals as it takes a more speaking
stance. The best you'll find here on Never Sleep Again methinks. The
metallic slicing effects around sample areas are pretty cool too. The following
Should've Known reminds me of Zakas, only not as well thought out. It's
strangely catchy, though...not sure why.
The Close My Eyes Forever cover (Ozzy/Ford) isn't
bad, but it smacks of the "trying to hard" syndrome. It's also annoying that
it's listed on the jacket as the ninth track but on my radio as the eighth (the
mysterious track called PaxilCR45 has gone missing it seems).
As Mort said...there's a lot of promise and possibility
here, but sometimes some people just don't try as hard as they should or could.
I know Erotic has so much more to offer, and the black metal scene is so
low-key right now it's a good time to come out and make a slamming stand on it.
But it's not going to happen with such under par productions, unpracticed
vocals and music as loose and unintegrated as they're now becoming known for
Post: 3650 Osage St., Main Floor, Denver, CO, 80221, USA
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