Forgotten Tomb - Negative Megalomania review
|Release date:||January 2007|
01. A Dish Best Served Cold
02. No Rehab (Final Exit)
03. Negative Megalomania
04. The Scapegoat
05. Blood And Concrete
There is something about most Italian metal that is just a giant neon light saying "Made in Italy". Sometimes it's total over-the-top cheesiness, a la Rhapshody Of Fire and sometimes it's their amazing ability to make even funeral doom metal sound bombastic, sort of like Arcana Coelestia (which are brilliant, by the way). Forgotten Tomb's fourth opus sounds so wonderfully "Italian" that I'd understand if someone called them the Rhapsody Of Fire of black/doom metal.
Previous albums by these depressed dudes were a fairly unique concoction, efficiently and effectively mixing the negativity, hatred and aggression of black metal with the sorrow and melancholy of doom. Spaghetti and depression, boss. Negative Megalomania partially departs from the mentioned style, moving the sound closer to the melodic spectrum, with a ton of quite noticeable Brave Murder Day era Katatonia influences. Make no mistake, however, this is still very much Forgotten Tomb in sound, only more accessible, less abrasive and, I'll be damned, somehow classier.
Whether or not you can appreciate this new approach is up to you, but I'm personally more fond of their earlier stuff, which was vile, sick and demented just for the sake of being vile, sick and demented. Negative Megalomania, no matter how much I hate using this term when describing music, represents the more "mature" and modernized side of this band. No longer will you hear blast-beats pounding your head, then suddenly stop and break into a monolithic dirge. This time, you get rocking riffs, catchy yet sorrowful leads and even clean vocals on occasion. While one might argue that they sound a bit cheesy and forced, they do a well enough job of capturing and conveying the suicidal atmosphere, but in a way only Italians seem to know how to do. A fairly decent percentage of leads and melodies manage to sound very inspired and captivating, but are a tad drowned by the more generic/filler riffs, unfortunately present in every track. Check the ending of the title track, for example. So much emotion captured in fairly simple shredding is quite a feat. Concerning the last track, however, disregard what you've read so far and prepare yourself for older Forgotten Tomb, with no clean singing and even a blast-beat thrown in there. Nice way to create a comparison and draw a parallel between the older and newer stuff within the album itself.
While definitely not nearly as ghastly or demented as fans might have wanted this to be, it makes for a dynamic, emotional listen with enough interesting buzz spread throughout to keep you entertained for its entire length, even if it doesn't pack a punch as strong as, you guessed it, earlier stuff.
But why should the band care what I think? They left more than a clear message what they think of us reviewers on the title track:
Tired of all your bullshit, fed up with all your crap
A bunch of retarded children, all dressed up in black
A mass of nerds, so repressed, behind your PC screens
Trying to appear so evil, to look more and more extreme
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