Voice of Ruin – Morning Wood (Tenacity Music)

Tuesday, 13th May 2014
Rating: 7/10

Words DR never thought would be typed on this site: “Evolved metalcore.” That, and “Poor album showing from Katatonia” would be the other, but alas, here we are with Swiss five-piece Voice of Ruin, who in spite of their farmer shtick (hey, whatever works), manage to pump out a relatively molten and inoffensive display of modern metal. Perhaps the whole trick is to avoid common trappings like beatdowns or clean vocals, or at least spread them out enough to fool regularly befuddled folk like us. On the band’s Morning Wood sophomore effort, exactly that happens.

The quick and easy comparison with these gents would be The Black Dahlia Murder, minus the frenetic technicality. Not to say there’s a lack of upward and angular moments – they’re taking place via “Welcome to the Stud Farm” and “Sex For Free.” (There’s that shtick again.) The flush death/thrash back-and-forth pushed out during “Through the Eyes of the Machete” is of quality, where a nice little barrage of blast-beats keeps things a-moving. Elsewhere, lead single (and video choice) “Cock ‘n Bulls” gets immersed in syncopated, stop-start land, along with some subtle grooves and guitar licks that unfortunately, aren’t more in supply.

However, the idea well starts to run low once past the album’s halfway point, as Voice of Ruin don’t quite have the sonic flexibility to keep the listener fully-invested across 12 tracks, which per the usual, is probably too long for a modern death metal album. Then again, the obvious tongue-and-cheek methodology of the Swiss should net them some curious listeners, maybe those who enjoy the overt flexing of Emmure, and the pubescent lot who refuse to let go of The Black Dahlia Murder.

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