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Feelingless – Metal Against Animal Cruelty

Metal Against Animal Cruelty
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 06 January 2023, 3:02 PM

From Bandcamp, “Founder and mastermind Hugo Markaida comments: Both my partner and I are animal lovers, and we live surrounded by rescued animals. That is why it seemed important to me that, at a time when the whole of humanity was suffering from a global crisis and its consequences, we could not forget the most vulnerable. Thus, I began to outline the concept of the album around the exploitation and mistreatment of animals. I was willing to work with the best and most favorite of my artists, so I started composing the songs thinking beforehand about who was going to interpret them. I told the participating artists all about the project and its charitable nature, with no profit for the artists involved in favor of associations that help animals in need. It was touching to see how my idols sympathized with the cause and joined the project selflessly.” The album has a host of well-known guests, and contains 11 songs.

The title track is the first. It’s Melodic Death Metal, but is also fairly rounded out in terms of the background. The backing vocal harmonies are also well done, as is the guitar solo. The song is energetic, and catchy, and I like that they are not afraid to use clean vocals either. “Peace” features solid guitar harmonies out of the gate, followed by some real rage in the drums and harsh vocals. “Love” is just as it sound…a thriller with plenty of melody and hooks. The harsh vocals are still very earnest, but I like the way that the band develops the melody, and the sharp contrast between clean and harsh vocals.

“Nostalgia” takes the listener back to a simpler time with music…a time when melody triumphs over everything else. The song is still very sturdy, akin to the genre, but the bones of the hooks protrude. “Guilt” begins with keyboards, and I suddenly wish there were more of these. When it comes to the genre, the sky is really the limit, in that bands are free to use outside elements not often heard in Metal music. Clean vocals are an example of this. This song has a very strong and sing-able chorus. “Pride” might be the point where the album starts to wear on me a bit. Although the clean vocalist changes (and he’s great!), and no one could ever fault the band’s musicianship, the song are running together a bit. I expected “Rage” to be, well, a bit more intense. The guitar harmonies are wonderful, however. The clean vocals also expand the sound a bit.

“Anxiety” closes the album. It’s a heavier song with thick death vocals but also retains some melodies. Overall, the band seems to have developed this formula very well, and the album is very well put together and produced. The sound is full and rich, and the guest list is incredible. My only criticism is that this sound has been done before by many bands that have a well-established foot in the door, and it really doesn’t offer anything too new, or original. Originality is not a kingpin of all music these days, and plenty of bands have successful careers manipulating older genres into their own. I love their message…fuck people who are cruel to any animal. I just wish there was a little more experimentation on the album.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 6
Production: 8

3 Star Rating

1. Feelingless
2. Anguish
3. Peace
4. Love
5. Hope
6. Nostalgia
7. Guilt
8. Pride
9. Fear
10. Rage
11. Anxiety
Hugo Markaida – Guitars
Pedro J Monge – Guitars
Iñigo Lopez – Bass
Lawrence Dinamarca – Drums
Record Label: Napalm Records


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