STYLE: Hard Music RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 7434-7193 LABEL: Meltdown FORMAT: CD Album
Reviewed by Marc Lungley
’Rite Of Refusal’, the long awaited album from Birmingham nu-metal/hardcore crew Gen, hit my desk a few days ago and I didn’t quite know what to expect, but I did know that it would be good. Having been mixed in America by Tim Bushong, this album has lived up to all what has been said about it if not more. In fact on listening to “Exile”, the first track on the album, I thought that Dave Williams (Meltdown’s managing director) was trying to “pull me chain” and had found some unreleased P.O.D. track I had not heard before. But eventually the effects on the vocal gave up Jon’s trade mark rasping vocal style, which is the best rasping/roaring vocal I have heard this side of the big man Mr Benji Webbe of Skindred. “Exile” is nu-metal plus one and yes includes a lot of rapping but not in any Limp Bizkit way and is more than a match for anything P.O.D. have done up to now. There are two tracks that will make knock out singles, “Helix Doll” and “Unity”. “Helix Doll” (to quote Jon from gigs) is about “the abomination that is genetics” and how people are trying to play God. The track has ‘System Of Ohe Down’ vocal chops coupled with guitar chops from one of Britain’s leading Christian guitarists Richy Styles, whose guitars on this album are seriously large at times and yet also display surprising delicasy. “Helix Doll” also has had some interesting samples added to it too like the whisper of “I saw the monster fall”. Hopefully these will be added live. This is a seriously powerful track that will blow any metal head away. “Unity”: there’s nothing like a bit of heartfelt tub-thumping evangelistic fervour. This has sent many a mosh pit off in the past and will do in the future, ending with a roar of one of Britain’s loudest Roaring Lambs declaring his love for Jesus. How many radio stations will censor that out, but hey, keep it on the single lads. This is almost certainly gong to be the best UK hard music album of 2003. The musical skills of the lads are so tight; John’s drumming provides a tight base for the band to work on with some amazing cymbal and high hat work, which so adds to some tracks in amazing ways. Andy’s diverse bass lines give the band another more originality to your average nu-metal band. ‘Rite of Refusal’ is a must-have album.
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