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Crematory - Oblivion

Label: Steamhammer / SPV
Format: Download
Released: 2018
Reviewed By: Jack Mangan
Rating: 8/10

Industrial Metal can be appealing, even for people who don’t wear long black trench coats and sunglasses. With “Oblivion,” Crematory have dropped a damn enjoyable album for 2018, with sounds calling out to the likes of KMFDM, Skrew, Rammstein, Pretty Maids, Vanden Plas, Alice Cooper, VAST, Celldweller, Al Jourgensen, nine inch nails, Korn and Cookie Monster. Yes, there are Cyberpunk synths, supplied by Katrin Julich, but it’s the guitars and vocals that are really at the forefront. The vibe occasionally goes epic, but the music often feels urban and street-level, like it was designed to glow under a blacklight.


Their sound is extremely European, and to put a finer point on it, extremely German Industrial Metal. Vocalist Felix Stass employs 3 different voices: one clean, reminiscent of Rich Hinks (Aeon Zen) or Andy Kuntz (Vanden Plas) - - his finest, which he uses to great effect; one coarse and distorted, like Al Jourgensen minus the faux British accent, which is used sparingly, and one Cookie Monster, like Cookie Monster, which is used a bit too much. This third voice is the biggest damper on the album. When I say it sounds like Cookie Monster, I don’t mean it’s a Death Metal growl. . . I mean that there are times he sounds a lot like the Sesame Street muppet, as voiced by Frank Oz. I can’t begin to explain how much this distracts from the song, when the main image evoked is a fuzzy blue puppet.
Vocal distraction aside, there are a number of excellent tracks that deserve recommendation, especially: “For All Of Us,” “Stay With Me,” “Ghost of the Past,” “Until the Dawn,” and “Wrong Side.” Ultimately, the album sags a bit on the final few tracks, which detracts from a full play, but should not diminish your enjoyment of the first three fourths of the record. No trench coat or sunglasses required.

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