Type OíNegative - World Coming Down

Shall we get things straight at the off? Ok. Iíve never been a fan. I think Matt taped me an album a few years back, before their Donington appearance. I got so bored I didnít listen to the end. Saw them live once after that, and dubbed them Bore OíNegative on the strength of it ... or lack of. Never owned an album by them, and if Iíd not received this, then I probably still wouldnít. The other thing, another bloody cover version on a RoadRunner release. This time itís marked as a "Day Tripper (medley)." Hmm, this is all highly suspicious. So anyway yeah, me not what you may call a big fan. And popping this in the old player and a time of 74 minutes coming up doesnít inspire me. 13 songs, 74 minutes. Ohmegod, I think Iím in for a yawn. But hey, mustnít let my preconceptions take over. Besides, Iíll bet Pete Steele would love it that someone thatís not a fan has to review this. Iím sure it feels like delicious irony. After all, you also have to think, whether you like them or loathe them, that they are probably the biggest piss artists in the business, extracting the urine at every opportunity. Well arenít they?

First track is quite sensibly called Skip It. It last 14 seconds, does fuck all really, and so you should pay heed. The real thing starts with second track White Slavery which has a very Black Sabbath feel to that opening guitar riff, kind like the doom sound that opens War Pigs. Steele opens his gob (gob I think is going to be a favourite expression this issue), and that monotone deep sound resonates from within. From what I understand, many "pure" goths dislike Type O. Iím not going to get into the rights or wrongs of that, because I know little enough about it, but as a non-listener to Goth, the vocals DO sound exactly like the stereotype idea of goth that inhabits my mind. Thing is, when I listen to them, that thought of "theyíre taking the piss" isnít very far away all the time.In this context I donít think thatís a good thing. The music, oh yeah, it was slow guitar led, then the guitar dropped out, it crawled through its 8 minute duration, and to be honest, hasnít been exactly riveting so far. Sinus does nothing either, itís another minute or so of noisefucks, before Everyone I Love Is Dead is up. Weird to me. Youíve got that bloody monotone, and then he throws in a pure Ozzy based scream and yelp. A difference of styles that shouldnít work to my mind, but I dunno, maybe it does. Maybe Iíve got to admit itís not a bad song. And thatís how it continues. Slow, drawn out, torturous. I canít describe it because nothing registers. I find myself switching off. Itís like I have to have my mind forced to sit through it, to listen for anything to stick, and if you have to do that, then surely itís just not very good for you.

Still, whatever, the rumours that they are putting out this time round is that thatís it if this doesnít make them financially stable then thatís it. Yeah ok, weíll wait and see with that. But is it going to happen? Well, as itís the likes of me (the non-fan prior to the album) that they need to appeal to with this album in order to make that leap, then sorry, but all you Type O fans had better enjoy this the last Type O album. Sorry, it may well be a great Type O album, but it hasnít won me over, and I canít see it suddenly winning others where the previous albums have failed. Itís still incredibly dull and boring to listen to for the most part. If theyíd released a 45 minute album, then maybe it would be ok, but 74 minutes of this is just way too long for me. Iíve tried to be fair and listen to this on a number of occassions before commiting my views to paper, I really have, but itís hard work, and I have to prevent myself from getting up and putting a different CD or tape on. And thatís not how music should be. It should be a pleasure, not a chore. Still, theyíve got some wanker like me to write all this about them, so theyíre most probably pissing themselves on the inside. Which is going to be hell for their clothes. And most other reviews seem to say itís one of if not their best album yet. So what the hell do I know.

Available on RoadRunner

Candlemass - From The 13th Sun

Candlemass, now thereís a name to conjure with from the dim and distant past. Though I never did bother to listen to them. Someone did tape some of their stuff for me back in about Ď88, but I never got into them. Same person taped me some Slayer, and Iím afraid I went down that slippery slope to Hell instead. I think he taped me some Exodus as well. Whatever. Besides, I was still in Wales, couldnít find many decent albums. Although all the ones I did find at the time I thought were decent. Anyway, this is about Ď99 not Ď88. Though you wouldnít believe it from this release. More like the mid 70s, mind you, thatís no real surprise now is it coming from Candlemass. I mean, they were doom back then, and doom we all know originates from Le Sabbath.

So Driod opens things up with a slit your wrist sense of doom. Forget the name of the current vocalist, but it ainít old Messiah blokey. Tot has a more spacey kind of feel towards the end, which at least gives it a little variety.

Elephant Star is more uptempo again, a good thing, cos one thing the Sabbath could be guilty of is being too damn slow and boring at times. And the vocal melody here is nicked directly from Children of the Grave. In fact, not knowing the words to Elephant Star I sang Children of the Grave. And it wouldíve been perfect if it wasnít for the fact that I canít sing for shit.

But whatís with the names? Blumma Apt? ARX/NG 891, Zog? I mean, pretentious. Moi. Ah, Iím sure it has something to do with the album title, and itís all clever and obvious. But baby, the kids just wanna rock. Sorry, just drifted to another plane there. Sorry for that one as well. Lots of passable Ozzy impressions, some good riffssuch as on Zog and Mythos, but ultimately itís not going to have a meteorological impact (sorry again!). Just seems that all the CDs Iím getting at the moment are either doom stoner suff or boring 80s metal, and nothing else. Makes it hard to get enthusiastic about what is ultimately competant but not inspiring.

Available on Music For Nations (and planets).