Released: March 20, 2007
Label: Roadrunner Records
Okay, first things first, the band name isn’t pronounced the way it looks; say “goth” but put a “d”‘ at the front and you’ve got the idea. The Hinderers is death metal, pure and simple. Daath uses complicated, furiously fast, high-pitched guitar riffs behind a gruff voice that can at best be described as incomprehensible. At worst, it’s the kind of voice that makes a humble music reviewer wonder if she can withstand the impact for an entire 13 tracks. If you’re used to metal bands then you’re better braced for The Hinderers than some, but if not, you might want to take a moment to think about your real feelings toward Slipknot, Korn, and especially Napalm Death before you pop this into the CD player. As it happens, I spent some quality time listening to a few metal bands when I was in high school and due to that essential training I did last the entire album! I like to think this proves my dedication to the musical world.
Now, I have to admit that I can’t possibly rate this record. It’s simply too far off my scale of comprehension, and I don’t want to unfairly accord a number to something I can’t even interpret. My usual questions of melody and meaning are lost in a sea of frenzied guitar solos and guttural shouts, and since the band doesn’t seem to have published their lyrics anywhere I have to give up hope of ever understanding an entire phrase throughout. My very best language skills were stretched to get this tidbit from “Festival Mass Soulform”:
Philosophies are fraught, the earth is overwrought (1)
So, let’s call this a deep album. Fair enough? Given the genre, it is pretty self-evident that Daath is not singing about something entirely inane, let’s say the girl all the bad guys want. In fact, it’s the kind of soundtrack I would give to those obscure fantasy novels that only me and a handful of other weary airport dwellers ever seem to read. Ever read Gifts? If so, imagine it made into a 3D animated movie and then give The Hinderers free rein. “Who Will Take the Blame” and “Dead on the Dance Floor” in particular have a movie feel to them; tracks like these sound like they were made for hard-core vampire movies, and if done well I’d really enjoy the two in conjunction with one another.
Alone, it’s another story. Maybe one black day when I am tragically alone and bordering on madness I will remember this . . .
1) Daath. (2007). Festival Mass Soulform. The Hinderers [CD]. New York: Roadrunner Records.