I purchased this disc after being thoroughly pummeled by their highly impressive live show. However, I did have my reservations about the disc itself, I had my doubts as to whether or not they would be as good on a round piece of plastic as they were two feet in front of me beaming with energy. My friends and I got in the car on our way home from the show and put the disc in right away to make a comparison, and it did not live up to my expectations.
However, there were many intervening factors, my ears were buzzing, my friends were talking, and the music wasn't playing all that loud. The next day, I decided to play it again, and it hit me, hard. This is a truly fantastic band; catchy hooks, pounding drums, great breakdowns and seamless transitions from fast to slower parts.
However, it's the vocalists that make this CD. On its own, the music is great, but with the addition of the two vocalists (Marie and Steve) DESPISED ICON are right up there with the other great Grind acts. Both singers use the guttural vocal approach, but their delivery is always clear and powerful. However, when push comes to shove, I think that Marie is the best out of the two, due to her more unique approach. She effortlessly goes from guttural growls to high pitched yelps, which is one of the things that helps keep the disc interesting.
To top everything off, the production lets everything shine through clearly, so the listener can pick up on everything. Never does the CD simply become a wall of distorted noise, or too muddled.
This is a tremendous debut, and everyone involved should be proud. (Online November 8, 2002)