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Replica - The Bright Side of Death

The Bright Side of Death
by Dorothy Cheng at 07 February 2013, 10:53 AM

Ex-thrashers REPLICA have released a new album through long-time label Noisehead Records, this time delving deep into a Metalcore sensibility.

The album opens with “Fate Of Gods”, a track that wastes no time in attacking the senses with its heavy riffs, most similar to that of DESTRUCTION's “Curse The Gods”. Perhaps the band has not exactly relented their Thrash past by paying tribute to one of thrash’s lesser known big bands (yes I know, that’s an oxymoron). I didn’t really dig the vocals initially, but was quickly proven wrong when Alexander Krumenacker unleashed one long, mean growl of epic proportions. Dude has stamina to rival athletes. This whole scenario reminded me of how I felt when I first heard TESTAMENT and didn’t like Chuck Billy’s vocals. Today, I love them.

It seems then that REPLICA as a band really is an acquired taste. The second song surprised me, not because it was extraordinary, but because it had the same exact type of riffing heard previously in “Fate Of Gods”. The song progresses and as a listener, one starts to realise that this is band that does not pay attention to speed, but more to tone, relishing in the heavy sound of the guitars.

Nothing As Emptiness” came on next and this time I was genuinely surprised, having been treated to a bout of CANNIBAL CORPSE-style vocals. As I check out the album cover, I’m struck by the variety of implications it carries and what relation it has to its songs. As I listened on though, I couldn’t really figure out what.

One thing that stood out about REPLICA that seemed to set them apart from other Metalcore bands was the fact that their personality and character shined through with each song. They have a definite edge that must have stemmed from their early Thrash roots, but I can see how they made the change from Thrash to Metalcore. They have that certain knack where they are able to portray heaviness and brutality without speed, which makes them ideal candidates for the ever-expanding Metalcore list of bands.

That being said, the songs do start to sound similar to one another. While “Fate of Gods” was an explosive vehicle for the band to showcase their musicality, the rest of the songs seemed to pale in comparison and even come off as lesser imitations.

REPLICA must really adore the song “Curse Of Gods” by DESTRUCTION because its riff style is heard nearly throughout the entire album. However, “One Mile Down” proved to provide a breath of fresh air with guitarists Dominik Steininger and Roman Wallner-Silberhuber abusing the tremolo and whammy purposefully. Not that abuse in general should be purposeful…

Overall, despite possessing diverse character that most Metalcore bands lack and having the ability to express that character in their songs, REPLICA still fails to pull free from the Metalcore spell of repetition and the utilization of “safety riffs”. There is talent, that’s undeniable, but talent does not always equal a great album, and since I am reviewing the album, I have to say that this album falls short of “good”.

2 Star Rating

1. Fate of Gods
2. Living in Bondage
3. Nothing as Emptiness
4. Death by Command
5. True Terror
6. One Mile Down
7. Throat Cut with a Butter Knife
8. Reason to Resist
9. The Curse of Evil
10. The Funeral
Alexander Krumenacker – Vocals
Dominik Steininger – Guitars
Roman Wallner-Silberhuber – Guitars
Stefam Aschauer – Bass
Martin Krumenacker – Drums
Record Label: Noisehead Records


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