Thursday, December 9, 2010

GRENDEL - Dragon's Awakening CD review

GRENDEL - Dragon's Awakening CD
NHR Records

There's a bunch of bands out there in the realm of Metal who go by the moniker GRENDEL. This one's from Italy and back in 2005 they had a decent release titled Beowulf, yeah go figure. Since then every time I've seen this band name on a release I thought it was this band. Unfortunately there's been alot of "oh fuck wrong band" type of moments. Beowulf was some really cool sounding blackened pagan metal with folk and the obligatory viking fetish which five years ago was not so in vogue. So fast forward five years and GRENDEL is back but with a change. Gone is founding member and vocalist Mordred. The other founding member, Chainerdog, has taken over full vocal duties as well as his usual guitar and bass work. Drummer Loathing is still behind the kit but where's the keyboardist?

Well this is no Beowulf and it's slightly disappointing. Chainerdog's lower volume vocals are not up to par with Mordred's banshee shrieks. The second problem is that Chainerdog not only has become a better guitarist but he's all over the place. His playing on Beowulf was definitely in your face riffage but on here it's frantic as if he's trying to prove something or fill in the space where Mordred's vocals once were. The third problem is that they pretty much have gone full on black metal. Look there's nothing wrong with that on a whole but on here the drumming sounds mechanical, typewriter sounding drums. In the five years between releases, plus the band officially split up in 2008, GRENDEL has become average.



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