Minus - The Great Northern Whalekill (One Little Indian)
03 Apr 2008
"sure, metal bands can play hard, but they rarely play smart. it's time for minus to learn speed does not equate to impact, and this sort of hyper-virtuosity becomes blurred and diluted on collision..."; release - '08
The front cover of The Great Northern Whalekill references the work of Jenny Saville - the painter first employed in popular music by the Manic Street Preachers on the cover of their Holy Bible album - and alas, what is contained within is no more original.
Purveyors of thunderous, foot-on-amp, windmill guitar noise, Minus are a cock-rock band of the grandest pretensions. This, the fourth album from the Icelandic metallers, represents a moderation in the group's sound, away from the all-out aural noise assault of their earlier releases - including 2003's Halldor Laxnes - toward a more conventional stadium rock direction.
The group now mix a smattering of DC Hardcore and California psycadelia with the main ingredient of Ministry style hard-rock, but the results sound a little tired. Opener 'Cat's Eyes' sets the tone, shifting through the gears to top speed from a standing start and never looking back. Bleak chord progressions run up and down the fret board, as the groups thrashes in all directions simultaneously.
The group themselves state they wanted to create "disgusting music", but the term is not apt. This is too bland to be considered disgusting; it's more monotonous, and verging on comical.
Sure, metal bands can play hard, but they rarely play smart. It's time for Minus to learn speed does not equate to impact, and this sort of hyper-virtuosity becomes blurred and diluted on collision, leaving all but one per cent of listeners totally dejected and repulsed.