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Ulvedharr - World of Chaos

Ulvedharr
World of Chaos
by Jack Harding at 11 June 2019, 4:39 PM

One word could not escape my mind, no matter how hard I tried, whilst listening to “World Of Chaos” by ULVEDHARR: Perfunctory. Neither thrilling, nor vomit-inducing, this album unfortunately lingers within a quality grey area. I say unfortunately, because these types of albums are the worst to write reviews for. If it were great, I could easily bang out 500 words showering the record with praise, whereas if it were awful, I could demolish the album with vitriolic prose. Instead, we have this monochrome environment. Riffs neither please or repulse. Songs neither bore or engage. They merely exist. This truly is the musical equivalent of TV static.

The journey through standard Death Metal fare begins slowly with full, and promising chords, as if building up to a great release in “What Have We Done?”. Tension is built, and just as the audience demand relief, the song switches to a riff that feels decidedly like a cheesy Rock ’N’ Roll track. I literally laughed out loud. The abrupt switch in tone, with such an uncompromisingly serious tone, make this feel totally accidental, and paints ULVEDHARR as figures of ridicule. What follows is 3 minutes of lifeless riffing ripped straight from Death Metal 101. Nothing mind-blowing, but nothing awful. All these songs are totally functional. Transitions on the whole work well, and no notes feel out of place, but nothing stands out and grips you.

This paint by numbers approach to Death Metal continues up until track 6, “Chemical Wind Imbalance”. This track completely switches gears, by being a completely pointless instrumental track, consisting of slower, harmonized guitars. This adds nothing to the album, and feels like a complete waste of time. However, as a reviewer, I like this track, because it gives me a clear moment to say to you, “only bother listening to the songs after track 6”.

The second half of this record begins with a sharp upsurge in quality. “Fallout,” “Silent Beholder,” and “Pull the Trigger” actually aren’t half bad! Yet again, these tracks are nothing spectacular, but for seemingly the first time in this album, riffs are given the room to breathe, develop and groove. This lack of breathing space is a real problem with this album, and I place the blame for this mostly upon the drummer. Someone seriously needs to take those energy drinks of this drummer. Blast beats are just forced in with nor regards to the riffs they are supporting, killing potential groove, whilst also just becoming fatiguing to the listener. On the seemingly rare moments when there are blast beats, instead all we have are repetitive and groove killing “boom-clap-boom-clap” drum beats. It’s as if during these sections the drummer is using one hand to down another Red Bull and only using one hand to keep the beat going whilst they do.

Another point of contention for me comes with the vocal performances on this record. At this point, it has become almost comical when someone complains about vocals within Metal, such a cliche it has become. However, the vocalist for this band sounds like an asthmatic on a treadmill, so pained and forced are his screams. My throat hurts just listening to them. The rhythms screamed are, yet again, perfunctory, but the actual vocal delivery is quite unpleasant. It does get more bearable the longer you listen to it though. I don’t mark this as a positive however. This isn’t me learning to love the vocals though. It’s more of a twisted Stockholm Syndrome type affair.

Neither earth shattering or god awful, ULVEDHARR add another record to the Scrooge McDuck-ian vault that is the genre, overflowing with generic Death Metal releases. You don’t have to listen to this record, whereas I did. I went through the boredom so you don’t have to. Count yourself lucky.

Songwriting: 5
Originality: 5
Memorability: 5
Production: 7

  

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. What Have We Done?
2. Death Stare
3. Cold War
4. World of Chaos
5. Fire in the Hole
6. Chemical Wind Imbalance
7. Fallout
8. Silent Beholder
9. Pull the Trigger
10. Vision of Chaos 
Lineup:
Mike Bald – Drums
Jack – Lead Guitar
Ark Natlilg Ulv – Vocals and Guitar
Markus Ener - Bass 
Record Label: Scarlet Records
     


Rating

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Edited 19 August 2019
 

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