Monday, November 19, 2012

Incantation - Vanquish in Vengeance (2012)

Let's get this out of the way right off the bat... Incantation, by and large, have been dead to me pretty much since good ol' Johnny Mac & Cheese decided to handle mic duties. I'm not sure if this has anything to do with being unable to competently handle two things at once, but I noticed that once JM decided to become Incant's "official" MC, the goings-on within the riff department became decidedly generic, not to mention that, despite the universal praise ol' chappy has received for a job well done, to mine ears (and apparently mine alone) Johnny boy's vocals sound laughably inept and rather painful to endure, and whereas the "low-ended" growls sound like some pussy chumpskate attempting to mimic his betters, the occasional high-end rasps that ol' Mac & Cheese emits from time to time are truly and absolutely embarrassing to behold. Normally I would laugh my ass off at such an atrociously lame attempt at death metal vocals, but because Incantation was at one point a band that I held in the highest regard, all I can do is cringe in horror.

With that aside, let us proceed onward...

Musically, this isn't bad. There are are some genuinely "evil" riffs scattered throughout and it's good to see that John & co. still comprehend the art of tempo changes and structure overall. There is a wealth of slow material on here ranging from mid-paced battery to all out doom, all the while dishing out plenty of skank and blast beats for those in the audience who suffer from ADD. The production is "ok". I would much rather have heard the band revisit the cavernous rumblings of their glory days, but apparently as gray hair and receding hair lines come to claim their own, they also take with them the weight of one's sound. Fuck it. Since Incant's pretty much employed this limp-wristed technique for over a decade now, I know better than to hold my breath. Long gone is the gargantuan and monolithic sound of albums such as 'Onward to Golgotha' and 'Mortal Throne of Nazarene'.

Of course, for all the "decent" shit that pops up on this album, there are still plenty of riffs that sound like they were written by a two year old with Down's Syndrome. The kind of remedial shit that someone comes up with during their first week of playing guitar. Allen West would be proud. Believe me, I understand that not everything has to fly by at mach 10, in fact, I have hardly a semblance of tolerance for mindless technicality, but come the fuck on, try and at least be interesting.

Already the masses are gathering to masturbate Johnny and the boys for yet another "bullseye" performance, and I'm sure anyone who happens to stumble upon this review will end up with their hiney in an uproar as a result. Oh fucking well. As I mentioned earlier, Incant's pretty much been a dead issue since after the release of their wildly underrated 'Blasphemy' LP. This certainly isn't the weakest or the worst of their releases, but it is a far cry from the shit that they were spewing out during the glory years. Oh well, I'm sure all of the trendy "OSDM Facebook hipsters" will be jumping for joy when this is released next week (given that they haven't already downloaded the shit out of it by then).

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