Manngard

European Cowards

Written by: PP on 18/12/2007 16:29:14

In case you are wondering why we are still reviewing releases from September here in December, it's because we are clearing out our huge backlog of albums sent in for review with hopes of being able to start in a fresh and timely manner come January next year. So next album on our review assembly line is Manngard's newest album "European Cowards", a furious grind/death/black metal assault on the Euro-American relations and the consequences of inherited aversions of injustice.

It's quite a topic for a metal band, one that usually is discussed by the left wing political punk bands, but I must say Manngard do a relatively good job at it. At the very least they don't come across as cheezy, irrelevant or anything like that.

The lyrical complexity is fitted into an equally complex instrumental setting. All three mentioned genres are visited either one by one or all at the same time, be it the tight guitarwork from thrash metal, the serpentine riffs of traditional death metal, or the indecipherable shrieking as heard in many black metal bands. The instrumentation is organic and varying, leaving each song structured differently. While the majority of the album is devastatingly fast, destroying most things coming its way, the band has also included some slower, spacier tracks like the first part of "Expulsion of The Assailants", for instance.

But nonetheless, "European Cowards" barely leaves the listener any space to breathe. Totalling at only 41 minutes, the ten songs race by you like a freight train, a brutally noisy one I might add. Although the album might have extreme enough sound to categorize it under extreme metal, it still lacks the same frightening punch that bands like The Berzerker and others have in the genre. Its basic strength - perhaps its only strength - is that overall, the record doesn't sound like someone scratching their nails against a blackboard for forty minutes, a feat that plagues many other bands in the black metal genre.

Download: Horrordementia, European Cowards, Divine Justice
For the fans of: Dodheimsgard, Cretin
Listen: Myspace

Release date 3.9.2007
Candlelight Records
Provided by Target ApS

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