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Nov 20, 2017







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Venemous Maximus, No Warning (Shadow Kingdom Records)




Ded, Mis-An-Thrope (Suretone Records)

If you’ve been missing the glory days of nu-metal, you’re definitely alone. No, I’m kidding, there was nothing like Slipknot: half the kickass-ness of Korn, a DJ who single-handedly nearly ruined drum-n-bass, a growl-sing-growl formula that could have gone the way of the trilobite after one LP for all I honestly cared. But that’s just my opinion; maybe if it hadn’t been for them, we wouldn’t have had Rage Against the Machine or Limp Bizkit — oh wait, Slipknot came after those guys, not before. OK, sure, I can knock it off with the Slipknot hate, at least for a minute, seeing as how that’s what this Tempe, Arizona, band’s debut LP is all about, a rebirth of heavy metal’s worst era, but this time the pandering to middlebrows goes deeper, opening with the lunkheaded mosh callout “Architect,” its formulaic intents doubling down with the trigger lyric “When I say go, go psycho!” It’s like feeling the invisible hand of The Man trying to wring all the energy out of the working class over nothing, man, I mean honestly. Next comes the obligato pre-indie-hip-hop rap-infused chestnut “Anti-Everything,” a deep threat toward the worst-era Linkin Park period that in the end has butter on its fingers. If this gets the slightest bit of traction I’d honestly be amazed. C- — Eric W. Saeger




Venemous Maximus, No Warning (Shadow Kingdom Records)
CD Reviews: August 17, 2017

08/17/17
By Eric Saeger news@hippopress.com



Venemous Maximus, No Warning (Shadow Kingdom Records)

It’s been a while since I just picked a random metal album and tried to make sense of it, and why not this band, who are said to be the kings of the Houston, Texas, scene, right? It’s not a complete accident that they wound up on tour with the Motorhead-ish High on Fire, what with this band’s influences pointing to Mayyyden, but no one gets past the gates of Music Critic Doom without having at least an atom-sized grain of originality. The thing starts out with a nice cheesy 1980s-horror-movie intro and then slips into gear with “Spellbound” (remember, they’re just “kings of Houston metal,” not “kings of song title creators”) and, by George, it’s Bauhaus! This is awesome you guys, seriously, a bit like Fields of the Nephilim (does anyone remember them? Anyone at all?). Off-Broadway-goth, some Judas Priest nods, a hilariously spooky “ballad” led off by a deep-voiced skit (“All of My Dreams”), this has it all. They are the kings of Houston metal, I hereby decree! B- — Eric W. Saeger
 





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