Black Like Vengeance – Empty As The Day


Album

Empty As The Day

Label

Truth Inc. Records

Year

2007

For Fans Of

The Haunted, Himsa, Machine Head

Summary

Throw up the horns and bang your fucking head

Rating

70 / 100
It’s a tricky game, this business of reviewing local bands. Because
as soon as a Melbourne disc lands in front of me, I’m compelled to
rave on about it like an absolute fuckshit, as if it’s the single
best, single most amazing thing in history, ever, for no reason other
than I’m a completely biased dickhead. This sucks, because if the
band is actually rubbish, people think I’m on ice or blowing the guitarist
or something. So when a local release drops which is not only as good
as most of its offshore counterparts, but in fact better than a lot
of them, it makes this shit easy as fuck. 

 

This is Black Like Vengeance’s follow up to 2006’s “All Has Blackened”
EP, and the extra time playing together really shines through. Each
song has a confidence and comfort to it that suggests these guys have
really dug their feet in and gone for broke, giving every track its
own identity and conviction. This is highlighted best when the maniacal,
mechanical intro ‘Once You Go Black…’ spits out opening track
‘Of Sundered Spirits’ right in your face, its aggressive kick heavy
drumming nailing down bone rattling guitars and vocals, letting you
know exactly what you’re in for, and it’s all systems go from there
with each track executed in the same competent, precise style.  

 

One element which I didn’t expect to work so well were vocalist Sheri’s
clean singing parts. I’d seen these guys live enough times and although
I was never disappointed by this component, I just couldn’t picture
it working on record. But boy was I wrong as fuck.  I’d go so
far as to say these catchy, mournful melodies are the highlight of the
cd for me. They break through at the perfect times and sit well with
the music, giving you a quick breather before the rusty trowel comes
back through to rip you a new neck. It’s awesome. 

 

This album is not without its shortcomings however. My main gripe being
with the age old chestnut of metal bands never knowing when to end a
fucking song. Although thankfully devoid of any eight minute wankfests,
I did find myself more than a few times thinking “this song could
have ended three times already”, and upon further listening, ended
up skipping the end of some songs. My other main concern here is with
some lyrics and song titles that come across as a little contrived,
“Asleep At A Wake” for instance. This, I know, sounds trivial, but
the affectation disturbs the confident feeling of the music which I
mentioned earlier, and leaves a fair chink in the otherwise polished
armour.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, this is a release that’s rock solid and mostly
uncompromising, and although it does carry a few deficiencies, I’d
still rate it quite a few notches higher than a lot of other shit out
there, international or otherwise.

Tracklisting

1. Once You Go Black… 

2. Of Sundered Spirits 

3. Empty As The Day 

4. Snuff Is My Business 

5. Dirge For Veronique Auguste 

6. Buried Temporarily 

7. The Black Medea 

8

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