GREATEST METAL ALBUM CUP - League 15: Mid-Essex Metal League Division One - Matches 9-12 (Updated July 12)

Which album is your favourite?

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  • Total voters
    21
  • Poll closed .

The Flash

Dennis Wilcock did 9/11
Obituary - Cause of Death vs. Meshuggah - Destroy Erase Improve

My previous familiary with Obituary is limited to Slowly We Rot, which I thought was nothing special. This is a different animal though, judging from the first three tracks. This is the type of death metal that I really enjoy, the more mid-tempo, grinding, groovy kind with moments of blurry speed dispersed in at times. John Tardy's vocals are very similar to Chuck Schuldiner here and I really like James Murphy's lead contributions. It's going up against a relatively weaker outing by a band that I really enjoy and contrary to what I expected prior to the listening session, I'm going with Obituary here. This is very strong death metal. I wouldn't mind if Meshuggah advances, either.

Kalmah - 12 Gauge vs. Virgin Steele - The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, Part I

Kalmah play Gothenburg-style melodeath with a some increased thrash influence. That's not really the type of death metal I enjoy save for the occasional exception. They have some cool riffs here and there but it's a very tiring listen, a very wide sound without much in the way of dynamics. They'd be better off without the keyboards. They still offer more to me than Virgin Steele though.

Kamelot - Karma vs. White Zombie - La Sexorcisto: Devil Music Volume One

Combination of power metal and symphonic metal, you say. Still waiting for a band to become an exception to my general dislike of these genres, more specifically the combination of these genres. Kamelot is as cheesy and unexciting as the next band that follows a similar formula. The White Zombie album is inconsistent and largely forgettable, but its sense of groove appeals to me more than Kamelot comes anywhere near.

Testament - Practice What You Preach vs. Faith No More - The Real Thing

Now this is actually a matchup between two albums I'm already familiar with. Practice What You Preach isn't my favorite from Testament - it mostly features forgettable songs but it does offer some really cool tunes here and there, like the title track and 'Sins of Omission'. One thing that stands about the album: The bass drum sounds really weird. The Faith No More album is more exciting musically, offers a great deal of variety. Vote goes to them despite Mike Patton's irritating nasally vocals.
 

srfc

Ancient Mariner
Obituary - don't like this music in general but I'm not totally opposed to these as it's produced well and I think for that style of vocals, even though I don't like it, he has a distinct and original voice

Meshuggah - terrible guitar sound, bass even worse, terrible vocals and whereas Obituary has a unique voice, this guy sounds exactly like most singers from about 95 onwards

Obituary with the win

Kalmah - another band who I never even heard the name before but somehow Metal Kingdom thinks this is in the top 70 of all time metal albums :lol: I quite like the intro it's heavy Wishbone Ash, riff is decent even if the sound is a little generic, vocals absolutely ruin this. I like how the keys are kept low in the mix. I'd probably have checked out more of this if they even had an average singer rather than this prick.

Virgin Steele - vocals less obviously Manowar than the previous tracks but the groove and lyrics stll are :lol: I don't know if it's just me, but these give Airbourne a run for their money in the title race for best clone band in the world. In fairness, I might actually check these out because they seem to have much less bullshit and gimpery than the actual Manowar do :lol:

Virgin Steele with the win

Kamelot - I've always avoided these because they have without, doubt, the worst most cliche name in the entire history of heavy metal, and considering the competition for that title, that is some achievement. I appear to have been justified in ignoring them becuase the music matches the name

White Zombie - opinion given before, I remember this video from mtv days, I'd never chose to listen to this stuff, but the groove gets the head nodding

White Zombie with the win

Testament - I prefer their first two albums but this is great, it's just a shame they are paired against an album I like a lot more.

Faith No More - opinion given before

Faith No More with the win
 

srfc

Ancient Mariner
Oh for fuck sake. A great Testament album against a Faith No More album. I had considered putting this one in my list but it didn't quite make the cut. It'll have no chance against Faith No More among people here.
All the rounds before with two albums I wouldn't even let play for more than 10 seconds, then two good albums come along at once, sod's law :lol:
 

srfc

Ancient Mariner
Is that a different mix for the promo of Falling to Pieces? Backing vocals sound way higher in the mix than I am familiar with.

EDIT: I mean different to the album version
 

karljant

Ancient Mariner
Match 1: Ouch! Two great records to begin with (and two classics as well regarding each genre). Already gave my two cents about Destroy Erase Improve and how original and influential it was for countless of future groundbreaking metal bands. As for Cause Of Death it's also one hell of a reference and an enormous step forward regarding the band's debut. Guitar virtuoso James Murphy enters the band but it's not the soloing that stands out here: it's the absolutely superb song structure, groove and overall dark ambiance. The intelligent way the band uses syncopations and iterations gives the listener space to breathe while the heavy as bricks grinding machine never relents. I must confess this is a virtual tie and if they happen to end up tied I'll revert my vote to Meshuggah, but for now I'll ride with Obituary.

Match 2: Never listened to Virgin Steele's album and must say it was a major letdown. Yes, the composition wit is still there, the orchestrations still sound good and the performance is quite nice. But the problem is the songs themselves... they the lack punch, strength and pomp William Blake's work demands. On the other hand I've only listened to a couple of Kalmah songs and didn't dislike the three I listened from this album. Welll it's nothing I would buy or something but their mix of Amon Amarth and Gothenburg melow death is enjoyable enough to give them the pass here.

Match 3: Well... yet another pseudo power metal symphonic mainstream wanna be against a White Zombie record I don't like much (as I stated before) but surely wins this one by default.

Match 4: Testament is arguably one of metal's best acts that are somehow underrated and also one of my favorites. That beings said... why Practice What You Preach? These guys have several monster albums in their repertoire (from their debut to The Gathering or even The New Order and Low) and we get one of the most "meh" records Chuck and the guys made? Don't get me wrong... it's not that it is a bad album but apart from the bombastic title track everything but Nightmare and The Ballad is medium to merely ok. The Real Thing is an old time favorite and a classic record as I stated before so my vote easily gravitates towards Faith No More.
 
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karljant

Ancient Mariner
Obituary - Cause of Death vs. Meshuggah - Destroy Erase Improve

My previous familiary with Obituary is limited to Slowly We Rot, which I thought was nothing special. This is a different animal though, judging from the first three tracks. This is the type of death metal that I really enjoy, the more mid-tempo, grinding, groovy kind with moments of blurry speed dispersed in at times. John Tardy's vocals are very similar to Chuck Schuldiner here and I really like James Murphy's lead contributions. It's going up against a relatively weaker outing by a band that I really enjoy and contrary to what I expected prior to the listening session, I'm going with Obituary here. This is very strong death metal. I wouldn't mind if Meshuggah advances, either.

Kalmah - 12 Gauge vs. Virgin Steele - The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, Part I

Kalmah play Gothenburg-style melodeath with a some increased thrash influence. That's not really the type of death metal I enjoy save for the occasional exception. They have some cool riffs here and there but it's a very tiring listen, a very wide sound without much in the way of dynamics. They'd be better off without the keyboards. They still offer more to me than Virgin Steele though.

Kamelot - Karma vs. White Zombie - La Sexorcisto: Devil Music Volume One

Combination of power metal and symphonic metal, you say. Still waiting for a band to become an exception to my general dislike of these genres, more specifically the combination of these genres. Kamelot is as cheesy and unexciting as the next band that follows a similar formula. The White Zombie album is inconsistent and largely forgettable, but its sense of groove appeals to me more than Kamelot comes anywhere near.

Testament - Practice What You Preach vs. Faith No More - The Real Thing

Now this is actually a matchup between two albums I'm already familiar with. Practice What You Preach isn't my favorite from Testament - it mostly features forgettable songs but it does offer some really cool tunes here and there, like the title track and 'Sins of Omission'. One thing that stands about the album: The bass drum sounds really weird. The Faith No More album is more exciting musically, offers a great deal of variety. Vote goes to them despite Mike Patton's irritating nasally vocals.
Man... your take on these albums is eerily similar to mine. Agree almost 100%.
 

Cornfed Hick

Ancient Mariner
Other than the last matchup, I affirmatively dislike all of this. So I won't spend much time on them, except to say I dislike Obituary, Virgin Steele and Kamelot a bit less than their respective matchups.

In the last matchup, I give my vote to Testament. Faith No More was original and bigger at the time, but the attempt to blend hard rock with funk and rap was, in hindsight, something I would prefer had never happened.
 

LooseCannon

Yorktown-class aircraft carrier
Staff member
Three very tight matchups and the fourth has FNM opening a decent gap. Interesting round so far!
 

Jer

Limp Pimp
Obituary is mostly boring diet thrash with terrible vocals. Meshuggah also has bad vocals, though not quite as terrible, and their music is much more interesting. Winner: Meshuggah

The Kalmah album has pretty cool power/thrash music, but once again, terrible vocals. Meanwhile, the Virgin Steele album has OK vocals and appealing songwriting. If the Kalmah album didn’t have shit vocals this might have gone the other way, but I can’t take it seriously the way it is. Winner: Virgin Steele

Kamelot is cheesy but generally well-executed power metal. The White Zombie album is crappy on just about every level other than basic groove, and would have been ignored and immediately forgotten were it not for people failing to pick up on the sarcasm in the endorsement from Beavis & Butthead. Not even close. Winner: Kamelot

This last match-up is tough. Testament offers up some consistently high-quality thrash here, combining the music of mid-80s Metallica with late-80s Hetfieldesque vocal stylings, and a few hints of Megadeth thrown in. Most of it comes off as derivative Metallica worship, but very good Metallica worship. Meanwhile Faith No More carves out a very distinctive style for themselves with a lot of strong songs and only a little filler. On balance I have to tip it toward originality here. Winner: Faith No More
 

Whooten

Ancient Mariner
Oh for fuck sake. A great Testament album against a Faith No More album. I had considered putting this one in my list but it didn't quite make the cut. It'll have no chance against Faith No More among people here.
I hate when the best 2 albums of the grouping go up against one another.
 

Brigantium

Paladin of Voltron
Staff member
Going for Obituary in the first pair, despite the really painful growl. Their music has a lot more character and variety than Meshuggah, who I've just never been able to rave about and find quite robotic.

Don't think I've heard Kalmah before and was pleasantly surprised. Lovely melodic parts, nice riffs from time to time, guitars sound great, keyboard for extra atmosphere, and I really like the deep and throaty growl. A well packaged album and band. I'm not averse to Virgin Steele either, but I much preferred 12 Gauge in this round.

Kamelot from the third pair. Enjoyable album and I'm just not into White Zombie.

Testament are decent enough at what they do, but it's still thrash and not my thing. Faith No More take me back a bit and are quite easy on the ear.
 
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