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Parasite Inc. - Dead and Alive

Label: Reaper Entertainment
Format: Download
Released: 2018
Reviewed By: Jack Mangan
Rating: 8/10

If you tossed Ministry, In Flames, Fear Factory, and Helloween into the blender, then added a smidge of KMFDM, plus a pinch more of Gothenburg Death Metal, you’d have the sound of Parasite Inc.’s sophomore full-length, “Dead and Alive,” their first since their 2013 debut. Helloween may seem like the “one of these things is not like the other” ingredient, but there are many times on this record where, if you changed singer Kai Bigler’s last name to Hansen, you could believe it was a new Gamma Ray record.


Unlike Kai Hansen, though, Bigler doesn’t sing at all; his voice consists of roars and growls, with occasional deep spoken word. The keys and the melodic riffs help to soften the blow, but the vocals and heavy drums and muted-guitar groove keep the feel aggressive. There is an undercurrent of darkness to their sound, but the song structures stay uncomplicated and accessible. There’s also a lightness to their sound that tempers the edge. “Sunset Overdrive” is a great example of this, with it’s airy, bouncy opening, which eventually gives way to Bigler’s coarse growls over the first verse.
The best songs on the record come in a sequence, with the infectious down-tempo chug of “This World” at track 2, followed by the Fear Factory vibe of “Fall of the Idealist,” followed by the NWOBM riff and shout-along finale of “Headfuck Rollercoaster.” I also really like the high energy pace of “Red Wine Collider” - - which, if it’s a pun on “Hadron Collider,” is a terrible play on words.
They’re labelled as Melodic Death Metal, but there are also elements of Industrial Metal, Thrash, and Power Metal to their sound. The vocals are probably too harsh for Parasite Inc. to ever see much mainstream acceptance, but I think fans across the Metal spectrum will find things to like about this band and this record.

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