MÜTIILATION are a classic band, with “Remains Of A Ruined, Dead, Cursed Soul” being among the best discs I have ever heard. Indeed, their greatness is recognised by the wealth of imitation bands, inspired by the despondent sweeping melodies that characterise the French master’s sound. Sometimes, as with SARGEIST, those inspired can become fantastic, capturing the real essence of the sound, but for the most part imitation results in failure. FORGOT’s “Burning Down” is one such failure.
They have the melodies, but these are devoid of the bleak depression and the desolate harshness that MÜTIILATION manage to infuse their passages with. Moreover, the vocals just don’t have the same emotive range or integrity of Meyhna’ch’s anguished shrieks. Quite simply, this falls far short in every aspect.
The result of this, is that the shortcomings of MÜTIILATION that could be so easily overlooked due to its brilliance, are illuminated without forgiveness by a powerful spotlight. For example, the horrible drum machine grates on your nerves and the woefully sloppy execution does likewise. Both of these are present to a certain extent in MÜTIILATION’s own sound, but there the drum machine is irrelevant in the face of riffing mastery and the lazy execution fits the mood perfectly. With FORGOT, it is just plain bad.
I can be unfair to bands who fail to compare well to my favourites. But then if you’re going to take inspiration from a source so obviously, make sure you do it to a comparable standard. No easy task, I’ll admit, but then this isn’t ‘bad’ per se. It is just average. However, average is catastrophically dire in relation to the genius of MÜTIILATION.
(Online March 2, 2007)