The prospect of sitting through yet another re-Thrash album is about as exciting as jury duty. It’s pretty much a given that frustration and soul-numbing boredom will ensue faster than you can say SLAYER. Seriously, I have no idea what prompted Brian Slagel and his cronies over at Metal Blade to sign Slovenian re-Thrashers NEGLIGENCE, as there is absolutely nothing about “Coordinates Of Confusion” that sets it apart from the deluge of similar acts currently suckling the life out of the teet of the Big Four.
Musically they are hard to fault – there are lots of driving rhythms, the lead guitar parts are more than adequate (and surprisingly melodic), and the mix is not too bad either. The vocals are a sore spot though, being just a tad too whiny and falsetto for its own good, and it ends up giving many songs a rather silly (though, I’m sure, entirely unintentional) Glam vibe. Apart from this little niggle, the songs basically achieve what they’re supposed to, that being thrashing, raging, and kicking up a storm. The title track and “The Insanity Asylum” are decent examples of this, but when the dust settles it is hard to deny that the album offers up anything even remotely interesting or unique. It is by-the-numbers Thrash that has been done a gazillion times in the past. Granted, they do infuse a little bit of Speed/Power Metal here and there – think the first two ICED EARTH records – but this has also become par for the course as far as this style goes.
I know it’s sheer folly to lump all these newer Thrash bands together – acts like VEKTOR and DEAD TROOPER have done pretty smash-up jobs of mixing up a pre-established blueprint and trying to carve out little niches of their own – but overall this whole re-Thrash movement has degenerated into a big embarrassment and annoyance to those of us who prefer their Metal to be a bit more challenging and forward-thinking.
“Coordinates Of Confusion” is not terrible, just completely forgettable (and unnecessary).
(Online November 8, 2010)