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Voz - 'Shadows Of Death' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/3e/d5/e1/2281_vozshadowsofdeath_1339433445.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     June 11, 2012    
 
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One of the most disappointing albums I’ve had the non-pleasure of hearing in many a moon.

The dictionary definition of “relentless” includes the words - cruel, merciless and unyielding. The definition of “assault” uses the words - offend, violate and attack. These two put together make up relentless assault, which is how I would describe the music on this debut album by the Florida-based metal band called Voz. And what surprised me more than anything about this album (and not in a good way) was the fact that it has Shane French (Millennium, Jon Oliva’s Pain, Teer) on guitar and John Teer (Teer) on drums, two guys whose music and previous acts have featured in this magazine many times before and always with high praise.

My reason for surprise therefore was that for some strange reason these two seasoned and very talented musicians have it would seem forgotten something that most if not all music needs - which is songs with melody and hooks. The first major problem on ‘Shadows Of Death’ is that it is an all out metal CD with little or no redeeming qualities; it strikes you with its raw and abrasive nature, which leaves an unpleasant and strange taste lingering in your mouth long after the CD has finished playing, and seeing that this band is made up of such good musicians, I was expecting so much more from the album. The second major problem for me is the singer in the band, Morrie Vozdecky, whose voice I found to be grating and very hard to listen to (though the record company Bio calls him a vocal phenomenon). Personally I found his vocals to be akin to that horrible sensation when finger nails are drawn across a blackboard (like in the cartoons), and as I gave the album its pre-requisite listens (eight in this case), I found it increasingly harder to get through it in just one sitting (never a good sign).

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Now before everyone starts jumping up and down and saying I’m being harsh about this metal album, please don’t forget that I don’t have any real problems listening to the heavier stuff out there. Bands like Opeth, Scar Symmetry, Candlemass, Mastodon, Carcass, Therion etc, can all be found in my CD racks but what they all have in common and what sadly is missing from ‘Shadows Of Death’ is anything like a memorable hook, chorus or just any joy in the songs. In fact I cannot even tell you what is the best or worst track on offer because they are all so much of a sameness that they blend into one long mess. Maybe this album will appeal to some of you out there (probably not regular readers of this magazine) but that person isn’t me. All in all one of the most disappointing albums I’ve had the non-pleasure of hearing in many a moon and because of the protagonists involved on the CD it really pains me to say the word - avoid. (Though do, please, make up your own minds).

Ian Johnson

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