Review: The Sound Of Perseverance
Magazine: RoughEdge / USA
Written by: Christopher J. Kelter
Published: 1999

Chuck Schuldiner is considered by many to be father of death metal. With "The Sound Of Perseverance" Schuldiner and this latest incarnation of Death create a sonic blast of controlled chaos. Aside from a few tracks on compilation CDs that I have this was my first true introduction to Death. I like what I hear.

Death's dual guitar approach lends a great deal of flexibility in pushing the creative boundaries of the seemingly limited art form of death metal. However, Schuldiner and his cohorts are adept at crafting memorable riffs and songs. I particularly liked the fretboard gymnastics of "Bite The Pain" and the slow thrash, yet still avant garde grind of "Story To Tell." All the solos are played with dexterity and emotion - both Schuldiner and Hamm do a fantastic job creating wonderful lead lines that balance power and beauty.

Additionally, the drum tracks are very interesting. The drum tracks must have been recorded in a manner that allows for maximum flexibility in the recording process. The drum and percussion sounds cover a wide range of percussive tones - each new listen to the disc reveals subtleties in the drum tracks; it's obvious that a lot of thought and care went into the drum tracks.

I am not particularly enamored of Chuck's vocal style, but it is appropriate for the songs. However, the lyrics are phenomenal. Schuldiner is very articulate in his expressions of anger, fear, hatred, loathing, and just about any other emotion that is a fair representation of being pissed off at somebody or something. But that's not all; there are traces of positive messages ("A Moment Of Clarity") that serve to allow the individual to be a pillar of strength rather than an external force as motivator - heavy stuff.

One of the things often said about Death is the fact that it is "trend-free metal"; I'd have to agree that Death is a throwback to the origins of death metal albeit with production values updated for the '90s and an unparalleled skill for songwriting. However, I have a bone to pick. Gentle reader, wouldn't you say that lately there is a trend for metal bands to do cover tunes? Death is no exception; Death cover the almighty Judas Priest's "Painkiller" to cap off this very good disc.


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Edited for Empty©Words 03-02-05