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Friday, February 17, 2012

Semargl - Satanic Pop Metal review

Year : 2012
Genre : 4/4 Disco Metal
Label : Twilight-Vertrieb
Origin : Ukraine
Rating : 5.5 / 10

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Ukrainian Semargl's fifth full length has about as much chance growing on you as the super-orthodox, 4/4 goth synth-metal of mid '90s Rammstein has. Semargl does not bring anything new nor challenging to the table, and, to be fair with this release, it does not even aspire to. The Satanic Pop Metal LP is a late-, but enthusiastically realized echo of a popcultural movement-, a mood disposition that both long have expressed what they are all about. You suspect the drill, and your related secret-immunity : the goth disco synths of the late '90s are waging the classic kind of 4/4 war with the classic fat rhythm guitars, failing to notice that they have a harshly limited set of techniques to avoid the fervent pitfall - BZZT! - of tedious repetition. As such, the album's failure to throw a promise of a glance beyond its modest ambitions, first is silhouetted, then it sports the promise of emerging legendarily, hidden behind the cascading 4/4 pummeling that seeks denial of the growing lack of its charisma after its first 5 efficient minutes. Make no mistake : the 4/4 goth synth-metal of relentless pummel power still has the timeless charm factor to it, yet this particular record is on a relentless hunt to exploit its fragile offerings armed with iron-spiked determination and a plastic dildo with YOUR name on it, my love. Guys, let's talk about the music.

I declare, first of all, (I will be the first to fall) that I will be the first and second to admit that the latest official video clip of the band brings all the traits and all the cheap-, but efficient attractions that I personally don't mind seeing in a pop metal exploitation video clip. Check out the clip in question, called "Tak, kurwa" here. "Tak kurwa" means : "Yes, whore". What is more manly that that?? This video, I'm shocked to report, brings everything you are afraid to admit that you kind of like in a pop metal context : a crazy-ass fronter who looks like he just stepped out of Jabba's palace, - he is pretty decent to be honest, legit hand gestures, etc. - the rabid headbanging of the guitarists at the climax is fucking priceless, and the women in the clip are just hotter than fucking hell, let alone how they are treated as objects. Yes, you will say that it is shameless pop metal exploitation, yes, you will say that there is no such thing as "pop metal", as it automatically is qualified as "shit", period., and yes, you will watch the clip again when no one is watching.

That is the idea, you know?

In other words, I like the clip and am not afraid to admit that, but I must say that I can't propagate the same sentiments regarding the full length this song is a part of. Simply put, if "Tak, kurwa"'s DNA is the 100% of what this LP seeks to offer, then the rest of the songs show a maximum of 3% deviation from the template, at best. I realize that you can shoot around with this notion quite cheaply and easily, yet now its legitimacy demands a poker face while at that. I don't know what the deal was with the band, but. They seem to fail to realize that the entire album rolls with you at a virtually constant 200 BPM. WTF! Almost NO deviations from this template. 200 BPM, proudly paved with the most classic techno pattern of "DUMM - c - DUMM - c", just place a snare on every second "DUMM". That is that.

As result of the super-constant tempo and drum pattern, - notice the absence of the plural form - the album is way past its prime before reaching its middle point, and that is frightening to note, and even more so to endure. With its 44 minutes, the album gradually, yet hastily degrades its initial brisk stance into a zombie-like drag at the midsection, while the last 15 minutes are the equivalents of the same amount of eleven eternities.

Not at all surprisingly, the Satanic Pop Metal album has an obligatory fixation on sexual themes and general metal-badasness, - pink latex not included - but the overall-, staggering lack of awareness of its super-monotonous character in tempo and taste make it a safe spot to give a glance to, or, to miss out entirely on.

Rating : 5.5 / 10

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