This year, 2007, has really been a stellar year for Metal album releases. Not only have many older and established bands come roaring back to a return to form but many of the newer bands are stepping up to the plate ready to go head to head with everyone and everything. THE RED CHORD has also stepped up their performance with "Prey For Eyes" their most vicious and unpredictable tour de force to date.
To really classify this album is hard. To say that it is Deathcore really only touches what THE RED CHORD force-feed us on "Prey For Eyes". To say that it is jazz influenced Death Metal only touches a different part too. Really this album is an eclectic mix of multiple influences from every walk of Metal. The pro of having such a wide variety of sounds and writing styles is that there is going to be something for everyone. There are moments on "Prey For Eyes" where I felt an awesome connection to the music. Unfortunately, it would suddenly shift gears on me and go towards a different direction and I would lose that momentary connection. This album is full of those moments and only on the fifth or sixth listen did I start to mentally catch where the album (and songs) intended to go. Even now there are a lot of moments where the music switches so swiftly and brutally that I am left thinking, "What the hell just happened to the song? Is it a new one?"
The performances on the album are the best of the band's career. The intertwining and technical riffs and Grindcore ‘spazzes’ with the overlaid melodies and jazz influenced leads are something that will twist and stretch your listening capabilities. This album is definitely not for light listening. Hardcore barks combined with Death Metal roars and Post Thrash singing all grace the songs presented on "Prey For Eyes". Sometimes it feels as though the band might be a little too eclectic to even get the song finished but their long and sometimes jam-oriented sound will keep your attention (at least for a little while).
Expect everything on this album. It's hard to say what NOT to expect anyway. This can only be classified as Extreme Metal at times because of its wide variety. Unfortunately, this album still doesn't hit it hard with me no matter how many times I listen to it. The technical musicianship is something to inspire but what "Prey For Eyes" truly lacks is that connection to the listener. A little too abstract and spacey to truly become a classic.
Songs to check out: "Send The Death Storm", "Intelligence Has Been Compromised", "Responsibles".
(Online October 21, 2007)