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517u4WmvzL. SL160 There’s a genre being touted as “Tech Metal” or “Technical Metal” that’s being used to describe death metal bands that have some serious progressive playing skills, yet use their powers questionably. Too often “Tech Metal” can also mean “unorganized sonic babble to annoy James with.” Truth is, there’s only a handful of bands and players that manage to combine virtuoso playing with extreme music and make it work. Off the top, BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME, CANDIRIA, and (sometimes) BUCKETHEAD come to mind. The reason? The can actually write songs.
BRAINDRILL’s QUANTUM CATASTROPHE is the latest in a string of disappointing releases from Metal Blade, with eight cuts clocking in at just under 42 minutes. With track after track of unstructured garbage, there’s literally no breathing room, nor is there any true musical merit whatsoever. The overly-triggered drums sound mechanical and artificial, not in an industrial sense, but in a just plain piss-poor sense. The leads are the epitome of guitar masturbation, and I can only assume that guitarist Dylan Ruskin likely ejaculated profusely onto the walls of the studio by the time recording was completed. Bassist Ivan Munguia is lost in the mix save for a few spots where they let him poke his head in for a quick audible doodle here and there. As for vocalist Steve Rathjen, he’d be better-suited growling away for a band that people may actually care to listen to for reasons other than seeming “cool.”

Ya see, that’s what it’s all about kids. Weird genres with bullshit descriptions so you can say you liked ’em before they made a listenable album and sold out to the man.

Between the 16-minute mess that closes the record and doubles as the album’s title track, and it’s preceding number, you could slap the two song titles together to describe this album: QUANTUM CATASTROPHE = MONUMENTAL FAILURE.

Rating: 0.5/5 Stars

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