Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Psychopathic Terror - Revolt


Psychopathic Terror is most commonly known as the much heavier side project of Korpiklaani drummer, Matson. I’ve certainly never heard of these guys (at least not in the metal world), and it sort of makes more sense to me why there are quite a few cyber goths that I know that have heard of them and no metalheads. I’ll go into that topic in great detail in this review.  There isn’t very much that I know about this band other than that I NEVER would have guessed that a Korpiklaani member would be in it, so that alone is an excellent representation of a broad range of musical style and creativity. I guess if I had a statement that I would want people to remember the most, it would be that this is nothing like what I was expecting, it’s not even metal! But remember, it doesn’t have to be metal to be good; I shouldn’t even have to spell out for you that I literally listen to just about every type of music in existence, so I don’t turn things down just because they’re not metal, I was just expecting this to have MORE metal than it does. HERE IS A DISCLAIMER THOUGH: although pretty much everywhere I look says that Matson is in this project, he doesn't take part in THIS specific album, making it pretty much a solo record.

Taking the fact (that I just discovered) that Matson isn't in this album, I find it much more understandable why this record sounds so different. But I listened to some older Psychopathic Terror songs and they still sound drastically different from the Korpiklaani style I was sort of expecting. Although I'm a little bit hazy on the background of the other member...why THIS?? Don’t even ask why, because here’s why: there’s a metal genre called industrial metal (famous alibi include Rob Zombie, Marilyn Manson, Static-X, Dope, and Nine Inch Nails) in which “industrial” computer-generated sounds and effects are placed on top of (and oftentimes weaved into) a faster heavy metal blueprint. Some industrial metal bands use more CGE (computer-generated effects) than others. But Psychopathic Terror is different; take the genre description I just gave you and reverse it. If you did that correctly, you would have come up with industrial/techno/aggrotech music with some metal mixed in. I mean seriously people, the drums sound almost completely synthesized (I thought it was a drum machine), the distorted guitars work in the background instead of being the body of the music like in metal, and the general vibe and sound the album puts off just makes me think of aggrotech and industrial music rather than metal (which is what the band is advertised as being. Remember that there is NOTHING bad about this at all! I listen to plenty of industrial/darkwave/etc. music out there like Angelspit, Suicide Commando, Emilie Autumn, Killing Joke, and Flesh Field. I just wouldn’t consider this band metal.

So enough about me bitching about genres and categorizations, let’s look into the music itself. Honestly, there isn’t very much to it; the overall music and song structure is pretty simple as far as I can tell. As much as I love technicality and complexity in music, it’s always a benefit to have some simplicity in my music world to help calm my brain every once in a while. But remember, simple doesn’t mean slow (complex doesn’t mean fast), because the music is fast. But for the majority of the duration of the record, the speed remains unchanging, which gets VERY boring and monotonous after a couple of songs. BUT, they do keep it interesting by slowing the tempo down every two or so songs. These slower songs, my favorite being Limbo, have a thick beat that would give anyone the urge to headbanging. Limbo is the one that stood out to me the most because it’s the song with the most creativity and color; using several different chord progressions throughout the song and even changing the entire mood and speed during the end of the second half.

I don’t know what’s up with the vocalist, because the vocals aren’t really that good…at all. I guess he sort of sounds like he was on a meth hangover when he recorded the vocals for this record. I can’t hear any emotion whatsoever in his vocals (the crappy recording quality makes it even harder), which is one of my biggest turn-offs in music. Isn’t the whole reason that people make music is to express themselves and their emotions? I mean, what’s music if there isn’t any emotion in it? The kick drumming is all over the place; making me even more skeptical as to if Matson really IS the drummer in this project. But then again, it was probably done on purpose for this project because I know that this guy is capable of better percussion work than this. And after originally writing this review, I came to find out that Matson ISN'T on this album, so now I feel glad that I got that clarified.

Overall, this isn’t something that I would pay TOO much attention to. It’s definitely not metal (although it has lots of metal mixed in); it has more industrial and aggrotech than anything else. But the genre that a record fits in NEVER influences or affects my opinion on it. The reason why I’m not being too sympathetic with these guys is because this is the third record they’ve put out, which means that they’ve had plenty of time to tighten loose knots and tweak their faults; but this record says that they haven’t really done that at all. Although this record is below average, this is a project that I would be very interested in hearing if they take it to the next level and improve themselves. I would give this album 7/20.