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Liturgy - Renihilation (Cover Artwork)

Liturgy

Liturgy: RenihilationRenihilation (2009)
20 Buck Spin

Reviewer Rating: 2.5


Contributed by: GlassPipeMurderGlassPipeMurder
(others by this writer | submit your own)

You know what's bullshit? When bands are so lazy and unoriginal with their name that they take--for their own--the name of an already established band both within their own country and, even worse, within their own genre of music. The example here is that it necessitates any reference to this Liturg.
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You know what's bullshit? When bands are so lazy and unoriginal with their name that they take--for their own--the name of an already established band both within their own country and, even worse, within their own genre of music. The example here is that it necessitates any reference to this Liturgy as "the Brooklyn black metal band," not Liturgy "the Chicago death metal band." No one would be dumb enough to name their Long Island skatepunk band Pennywise, so why can't metalheads think of something new? Yeah, I know, there are two groups of Subhumans and a pair of Youth Brigades, but this was well before the internet in a time where such excuses could be legitimated. That's the first thing about this that pisses me off. The second is more inherent in the style but no less distracting.

I'll admit without shame I'm no scholar of black metal, but it's a little tedious being assaulted by an inexhaustible chain of blast beats song after song for 45 minutes. These compositions, almost by definition, start slow and boring (sometimes with the help of a precursor track of droning filler) and eventually build to cacophonous monotony, but they never really go anywhere. Liturgy (the Brooklyn black metal band, not the Chicago death metal band) is certainly no exception. The unnamed, opening droning track stretches to uncomfortably numbing lengths before "Pagan Dawn" (yes, that's really what it's called) hammers in. Jarring at first, after a minute of steady blast beat pummeling, it loses whatever menacing effect it first claimed and begins to mold into an immutable mass of noise. Vocalist Hunter Hunt-Hendrix shouts nothing coherent, which might not be a problem if there was a lyrics sheet to reference when lauding or lambasting whatever assuredly dark, evil poetics he puts to paper. The same formula of unnamed droning intro/intermissions is repeated throughout the album, from "Ecstatic Rite" to "Beyond the Magic Forest." The only real deviation is on "Arctica," which breaks down into a more measured meter and some semblance of multiplicity deep into the composition.

Reviews of Renihilation have ranged from hailing it as little short of a black metal masterpiece to dismissing it as ironic hipster garbage. Whatever the distinction, Liturgy (the Brooklyn black metal band, not the Chicago death metal band) has failed to produce anything moving on Renihilation.

 

 
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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
thus_spoke_sean (March 5, 2010)

GPM, while i'm normally a fan of your reviews. Can't say that here, and I don't even like this record.

I do, however, like black metal, and it sounds like you don't. That's cool. But most of your criticism is about how you don't enjoy it. That in itself, doesn't make it bad.

GlassPipeMurder (March 4, 2010)

to the poster below: i'm not sure where in the review you're reading anything about Liturgy ripping off previous black metal. furthermore, you can't expect a fawning review for a style the reviewer doesn't particularly care for. you wouldn't find someone who isn't into beatdown hardcore lauding a Nasty album, despite that they're supposedly among the genre's 'best,' just like you wouldn't expect Paulson to get a good review in Razorcake (they didn't) despite receiving positive press from many other sources more closely associated with the type of music they play. it's not reasonable to assume anyone should automatically like a release regardless of stylistic preference and outlet. if this were lambgoat, i could see where you'd be upset. but neither this website or reviewer have any history of hailing black metal, so it should come as no surprise that when sent an album to review, it didn't receive the same fanfare it did on blackmetalownsyou.blogspot.com. by the way though, this is not the only mixed review of Renihiliation: http://heavymetal.about.com/od/l/gr/liturgy-renihilation.htm

dreeeamweaver (March 4, 2010)

this is the most ridiculous review i've ever read. my thoughts:

i'm going to listen to the next green day album and review it. and by review it, i'm going to say that this band is clearly ripping off the 90's band green day who played punk music, and while i don't listen to or understand punk, i get that it's all 3 chords w/fast drums and snotty vocals for 32 minutes. the new green day, who plays bloated ripoffs of meatloaf-era rock operas, another genre i know absolutely nothing about and generally abhor, likewise blows b/c they sound like every other bloated past-their-prime rock opera band trying to matter as they age and the band members have kids and learn how to read. then i'm going to give it 2 stars.

iamgodsongs (March 2, 2010)

mike: i don't even know what to say. maybe i need to take a step back and evaluate my dedication to the core, and what it means in my life.

pizzaclaus: no worries, but i think you missed my point. BM is already a pretty comical genre, saying something like "OMG TR00 KVLT" is putting a dagger in the little credibility the genre and it's fans have. i know you probably didn't put a lot of thought into it and i'm overanalyzing and being a dick but still. also i don't frequent any board besides this one and guitar forums.

PizzaClaus (March 2, 2010)

And Iamgodsong, sorry I snapped. It's not letting me edit the damn post.

PizzaClaus (March 2, 2010)

OH and Glasspipemurder. If you want a similar band that is drastically better listen to Krallice.

PizzaClaus (March 2, 2010)

Yeah because I don't listen to Darkthrone or Emperor or a number of other black metal and frequent a metal board you dick bag.

mikexdude (March 2, 2010)

You haven't dedicated your life to the core.

iamgodsongs (March 2, 2010)

mikexdude: considering you mostly listen to hardcore, one of the most stagnant genres in music (coming from someone who loves it too) you have no room to make fun of black metal. any music can be exciting to SOMEONE. black metal is not everyone's cup of tea, but yes there is exciting black metal, though most of it i find interesing is fused with some other genre and purists frown about that sort of thing and say it's not black metal, so oh well.

other dude, the whole KVLT thing is like a bad 4chan meme, it needs to die or stop being used ironically. irony in music is for hipsters and douchebags.

GlassPipeMurder (March 2, 2010)

You know what's bullshit? When a reviewer who doesn't know anything about a genre decides to review one of the best albums of the year from that genre. I don't know how well this will hold up but I do know that as of now, it's one of the best and most exciting black metal albums I've heard in a long while. Yes it might take some time to get used to for someone who isn't into black metal but that doesn't mean it's bad. The entire album is meant to be taken in at once and at a loud volume where it washes over you.

I didn't decide to review it, it was sent to me to be reviewed. I review what I'm sent, the decision for me to review it was made by the promo company. Also, I didn't say it was bad. It's fine, it just doesn't do anything to me at any level. Hence, the mediocre score.

PizzaClaus (March 2, 2010)

It's not tr00 Kvlt black metal.

conduit (March 2, 2010)

So..um...if you know nothing about black metal, why are you reviewing a black metal album?

Great review though, I definitely give a fuck that it annoys you that two bands have the same name.

mikexdude (March 2, 2010)

"Exciting black metal"

lollolololololololololololololool

iamgodsongs (March 2, 2010)

granted i'm on a school computer and can't really read part of the review, it seems like the reviewer is uninformed in regards to the genre. black metal is supposed to sound repugnant, and honestly i could care less if there is another band with the same name as any other, as long as the music is good. that being said i haven't heard this.

Hulkamania777 (March 2, 2010)

You know what's bullshit? When a reviewer who doesn't know anything about a genre decides to review one of the best albums of the year from that genre. I don't know how well this will hold up but I do know that as of now, it's one of the best and most exciting black metal albums I've heard in a long while. Yes it might take some time to get used to for someone who isn't into black metal but that doesn't mean it's bad. The entire album is meant to be taken in at once and at a loud volume where it washes over you.

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