The SLoT - 2 Wars V.2 review
|Album:||2 Wars V.2|
02. 2Войны / 2 Wars
04. Пуля / Bullet
05. 7 звонков
09. Здесь и теперь
11. День закрытых дверей
13. Рисунок на тему "Вечное лето"
14. Бумеранг / Boomerang [re-recorded with Nookie on vocals][bonus]
15. Хаос / Chaos [re-recorded with Nookie on vocals][bonus]
16. Amadeus [Falco cover][feat. Kirill Nemolyaev][Digipack bonus]
It would hardly be fair to say that Slot reached the high point in their career with 2 Wars V.2, for two reasons. First, their career is (hopefully) nowhere near over, so such a statement would be foolishly nearsighted. Second, this implies that things went downhill for the band after this album, and it almost seems a crime to assert that their subsequent material was in any way inferior. However, if I had to choose one album to define Slot's career, it would be this one, simply because it captures the band's essence so perfectly.
Stylistically, Slot jumps all across the map, per usual. Rap rears its ugly head on tracks like "X-Stream" and "Plastika," but is mercifully diluted to the point of non-suckitude by the heavily-detuned and distorted guitar. "Bullet," a stab at speed metal, is one of the album's heaviest tracks, highlighting the driving force of Slot's rhythm section without ever getting too muddy. Ethereal and cascading keyboards dance in and out of the foreground throughout the bulk of the album, sometimes providing the melody and other times playing off the simpler guitar passages. The absolutely crushing "TerrorEast" makes the majority of the album seem almost poppy by comparison, but in reality the songs are all rife with the kind of melody and diversity that are hard to come by in a band nowadays.
If there is one standout characteristic of this album, it is the vocals. 2 Wars V.2 is, as the name might suggest, the second version of Slot's sophomore release, 2 Wars. When vocalist IF left the band in 2006 and Nookie was introduced in her absence, Slot decided to break her in by re-recording the entire second album and a few tracks from their debut, Slot1 (if you own the Digipack, you also get treated to an excellent cover of Falco's "Amadeus"). Not only did Nookie earn her stripes with this re-recording, she blew the lid off of everything the band had previously done. Founder and male vocalist Cache raps several of the verses and offers up a few raw-throated screams from time to time, but clearly the band's featured talent resides with Nookie. From the hauntingly beautiful ballad "Lullaby" to the (dare I say) brutal re-tooling of "Chaos," Nookie's voice is excellently showcased throughout the album. Possessing an admirable range and raw power boasted by few other female Metal vocalists, Nookie manages to take half of Slot's then-current catalogue and make it her own, signaling the direction they would take in the future.
The variety in song structure present on 2 Wars V.2 presents a good indication of why it is so hard to match a single genre to the Slot name. Honestly, when a band's influences run the full gamut from the Beatles to Metallica to Limp Bizkit to Bring Me the Horizon, achieving the same consistency as Slot is no small feat. However, clearly something is being done right, because Slot has created with 2 Wars V.2 a testament to the unprecedented genius of the modern Russian metal scene.
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