Complete Failure – Heal No Evil
I’m not totally sure what exactly inspired it, but the wave of hardcore bands adopting a strong influence from Entombed is certainly pleasing to my ears. When Cursed was still around, I loved their gritty style of “Death ‘n Roll” influenced hardcore, and I’m happy to see that a couple years after their unfortunate breakup more bands are starting to pick up on the style. While Complete Failure exhibits influences from many different sources, they certainly fit in with the current crop of bands like Trap Them and Black Breath that have been producing doomy, grind influenced hardcore.
Heal No Evil is Complete Failure’s second release, and saw its initial release in 2009, but has recently been re-released. As a result, the record found its way to me for review. Needless to say, I’m pretty impressed. This was my first time listening to the band, and this record has served as a great introduction. At times it’s fast, at times the tempo is slowed down, but it’s always heavy.
What I find to be most impressive is the fact that this record was self-recorded, self-produced and as far as I know, self distributed (until getting re-released by Relapse). With all that in mind, the record sounds really good. Every instrument comes through loud and clear, my only complaint being that I wish the bass had a little more “boom” to it. Other than that, I can’t complain at all. The production is very, very solid.
Musically, what you can expect is fast paced, grimey hardcore with a decided grind/death influence. While that formula may sound familiar, I can’t put my finger on any bands that Complete Failure sounds like. It’s not anything groundbreaking, but it’s definitely unique, and is well deserving of credit for that.
Tracks like the opener, “Like Rainbows in Gasoline,” “Craft of Discontent” and “Black Glossolalia Bizarre” are straight up rippers that certainly warrant nonstop headbanging. When the songs are fast, they’re moving at breakneck speeds, and when they’re heavy, they could be right at home on any death metal record. Then, there are tracks like “The Exploding Fuel Tank of Desperate Intolerance” that slow the pace down to a haunting crawl. This song in particular reminds me of something you would hear on a Cursed record, as it bears resemblance to “Reparations” off of Two, and “Friends in the Music Business” off of Three. Anytime I can make a comparison to Cursed, that’s definitely a good thing. The followup track to “The Exploding Fuel Tank…” is “Psychoactive Pedigree,” another fast paced song that is rife with blast beats. “Impoverished Orgasm Liaison” is a two part epic that leads into the final track. The first part is very doomy in sound, while the second rips into full on tremolo picked blast beat grind, accented with some great traditional hardcore riffing. The final track, “Detoxicant Clockstomp” follows suit with the rest of the record. It has its grind parts, and it’s doomy, heavy parts which close out the record.
Overall, this record is very, very solid and definitely worth a listen if you like any of the bands that I mentioned earlier in the review. Like I said before, it’s not breaking any new ground, but for what Complete Failure does, they do it very well.