Does the fact that I feel this album to be a re-hashed, tired, dull, lacklustre, uninspired exercise in sterile bluesy Radio-Rock in the guise of so-called "Death Metal" make any difference as to whether or not you end up buying it? I won't flatter myself, I'm just little ol' me, a disgruntled bald Metal-kid with some itchy typing hands and giant cock I mean intellect. But allow me to offer up a third opinion on "that album with the hot growling chick" known as "Wages Of Sin", as I don't think I could remain sane knowing that it got two 9+/10 ratings in these very pages, just as with the 10/10 review of the latest SLAYER-crapfest, done by that guy who puts spaghetti recipes as whole album reviews...
First off: the good. Angela is infinitely better than Johan Liiva (I mean her VOCALS you dumbass!). Liiva was so bad that I have developed a theory: those weren't actually "vocals" he was doing on the first 3 albums, but rather a series of strung-together tape recordings of various bandmembers emptying their bladders and bowels in the studio, and the album's lyrics were the commentary (seriously, have you ever read ANY AE-lyrics? Laughable at best!). So basically, the addition of a blond bombshell who can wail is certainly a plus here! Secondly, the drumming is godly. Daniel Erlandsson IS god, end of story.
Now to the bad: the songs, the riffs, the lyrics, the same old solos since day one! This gets my vote for "biggest blueballing of 2002", as I was anticipating being "blown away" after reading all those praising reviews...No sir, my first reaction was one of "gimme a fucking break!". I cannot believe that with the talent of the Brothers' Amott, they are wasting their time with this! Ever since "Black Earth", I've felt that this band has been all about utilizing immensely talented musicians for immensely futile purposes. Song after song of banal Death-Rock (Rock??? - Alex) riffing, starting nowhere, GOING nowhere, ending up in some forgotten musical wasteland alongside the latest SLAYER or any post-1990 METALLICA-offering. Buying this album basically serves two purposes for me: 1) to have firsthand knowledge of its uselessness, 2) I'll get to that in a second...
I have high standards for musicians of this calibre. Were this another band with lesser-known members, I wouldn't be as critical, but if you take a good listen to this as I have, several times over, you might come away knowing just how superfluous it really is at a time where Metal is advancing into newer, more daring territories - or you might just worship it like all your other friends do. But I guess if you like your bands to do the same thing, all the time, every time, for all time, ARCH ENEMY have your kind well figured out - so be a good little sheep and go grab this ASAP!!!
I, on the other hand, am not buying it...well, I already bought it - SHIT! I'm just as much of a sucker myself. But I rather prefer my music to be, as Alex would put it, "very varied" (oh I am in for it now, consider this Gabe's farewell-review). Such a term seems unknown to AE...hell, it's unknown to me too! (been nice working here, I'll miss you all!).
Check-out tips: the blond on page 6, ohh la la! If you'll excuse me, I just got some brand new hand towels that need "dirtying up"...now leave me alone!