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Profile for D. J. Marriott > Reviews

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Content by D. J. Marriott
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Reviews Written by
D. J. Marriott "Labratforthegovernment" (Bangor, Wales)
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Harmonies For The Haunted
Harmonies For The Haunted
Offered by westworld-
Price: £12.98

5.0 out of 5 stars Haunting, 18 Jan. 2007
From the start to the finish, this album is something special. Although some reviews have suggested Stellastarr*'s first album is better, I beg to differ. This follow up shows a growing awareness of their ability to create something altogther different, weaving haunting guitar riffs with soft synth effects and melancholic vocals.

The vocals are particularly important; vocalist Shawn Christensen sounds like Morrisey if Morrisey was good, and the backing vocals offset his dark tones. Lyrics are as catchy as ever, particularly on 'Sweet Troubled Soul', but there are plenty of strong songs here. 'Island Lost at Sea', 'When I Disappear,' 'Angela' - all are memorable and beautifully created.

'Island Lost at Sea' deserves a special mention; it possesses one of the finest guitar riffs I've ever heard that contrasts perfectly with the soft, disturbing synth. A much more mature album than the first; its only weakness is the lack of sing-along songs - but when the songs are this good, who cares?


Hypnotize
Hypnotize
Offered by jim-exselecky
Price: £11.99

14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Darker and braver than ever, 22 Nov. 2005
This review is from: Hypnotize (Audio CD)
The long awaited (well, several months) second part of the Mezmerize/Hypnotize album by System of a Down is finally here – and is certainly worth the wait. A feast of dark, political songs await you with Hypnotize; the album is full of the originality that made System of a Down one of the most popular of the modern metal bands.
Hypnotize is markedly different from previous works of this Armenian-American band. The style of the music is more mature – strikingly so. It is, perhaps, not as heavy as previous works – but the vigour and energy of the metal genre is not lost here. Soaring riffs give way to haunting orchestral pieces, giving weight to the stark lyrics.
As with all other System albums, politics are the primary focus here – particularly war, with the Armenian genocide featuring prominently once again, particularly in the song Holy Mountains. The title track deals with the manipulation of the public, along with U-Fig. Serj Tankian and Daron Malakian combine in a risky but ultimately fruitful combination of raging and lamenting which strengthens the band’s message – one that becomes more obvious with each listening.
System of a Down have the courage to write bluntly about the controversies of American politics, combining their poignant argument with beautifully sculptured, passionate music.


Doomsday Machine
Doomsday Machine

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Melodic death metal at its very best..., 13 Sept. 2005
This review is from: Doomsday Machine (Audio CD)
I bought this album on the basis of a good review and hearing a couple of Arch Enemey's songs. It hasn't left my CD player since - it's incredible. I haven't heard such good guitar playing in a modern band before, and the melodic riffs are mixed with growling, angry death metal vocals, and some catchy lyrics.
The album opens with the first of two impressive instrumentals (I'm not usually a fan of instrumentals, but these are well done) and moves swiftly onto Taking Back My Soul, a catchy, powerful track. Next is Nemesis - my favourite on the album, a long intro builds up for the wonderful chorus - "One for all - all for one/We are strong - We are one" this song (about revolution) would stand out if the others weren't so good.
Other highlights include Carry the Cross and Mechanic God Creation.
Rarely has a metal album been so melodic and yet so brutal at the same time.


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