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Ticket To Hell - Operation: Crash Course

Ticket To Hell
Operation: Crash Course
by Erika Wallberg at 27 July 2010, 7:07 PM

It’s funny how a band's name can move from sort of silly to close to perfect the more you listen to a record. TICKET TO HELL set my mind on some of the “three cool words” bands that normally try to be something that Metal is nothing about. Checking out the biography that came a long with the record I learned that “Operation: Crash Course” is TICKET TO HELL’s second full length album and that it wasn’t at all Metalcore, then it all got a little more interesting. Thrash/Death/Black from Mexico sure sounded more interesting than what I had in mind for the name. Not that I’m especially familiar with the Mexican Metal scene more than STRIKEMASTER though.

It took me a few spins to get into the record though. “Operation: Crash Course” is just what the genre description said, a little of each. The record starts up with a very nice old school Death Metal song, “The Hidden Illness”, that still has a little of that modern catchy sound. The thing I really like about this project (yeah it’s wrong to call it a band since it just is Jacobo playing all instruments by himself with some help from session drummer Alfonso "Porncho" Sanchez) is that they have managed to do catchy songs without compromising with the brutal style. A lot of bands tend to overdo everything nowadays and really lose the music. Black Metal is either too symphonic or too primitive, Death Metal is either extremely tuned down or way to adjusted but TICKET TO HELL has really managed to have the atmospheric parts but still keep the music heavy and basic. The production is very pleasant and balanced, nothing to complain about really. “Bluescreen Circus” is the Thrash-iest song on “Operation: Crash Course”, at least the opening riff is typical Thrash. The title track is the most Black Metal one. That’s another point where TICKET TO HELL really has managed to mix every style to a mish mash and still get it to stick together.

So why do I still feel hesitant against the record from time to time? Well, it’s a little with TICKET TO HELL as it is with a lot of other bands nowadays, it’s a little too perfect, a little to polished and that’s a turn off. Music still needs to feel alive and vibrant even on record. It’s not a huge issue here but there are tendencies towards a little too processed and compressed. The structure in the production is very good though, there are a lot of different guitar-sounds, different ways of playing. It just feels like I can’t believe it until I see it. I’d love to be proven wrong though and I really hope I get a chance because this is a very good collection of songs.

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
  1. The Hidden Illness
  2. Metallic Overdose
  3. Isolation Row
  4. The Sickest Lie
  5. Bluescreen Circus
  6. Operation: Crash Course
  7. The Box
  8. Last One Standing
Lineup:
Jacobo - Vocals, Guitar, Bass, Keyboards, Drums
Alfonso "Porncho" Sanchez - Session Drums
Record Label: My Kingdom Music
     


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