I gotta change my bio file at TMO and add Hardcore to the list of my incompatible reviewing styles cause I just can’t get into it, I liked it when I entered my teen ages but those days are no more. Truthfully, there just ain’t no hope for me in this genre, but that doesn’t mean I’m gonna give every Hardcore album a zero, I’m a reviewer, so that’s what I’ll do, review, you can always analyse a product without having to enjoy it right?
TOMMYKNOCKERS, a famous best seller of the great horror writer Stephen King, a cult classic among BLIND GUARDIAN fans, and also the name of a French Hardcore band now releasing their second full-length album under the title “Songs Of Nothing”. On a side note, these songs have been recorded at the band’s home studio; according to the bio, they’ve had some bad experiences with past recordings, so they built a studio for themselves.
The band plays some kind of Metallic Hardcore with incessant distorted shouts that are oh so annoying. The musical platform is definitely Hardcore but they also add inputs from Thrash and Melodic Death Metal yet these influences are too small to call TOMMYKNOCKERS a Metalcore act. Honestly, the Frenchmen are talented song writers, they can write stuff that’s good but the problem shows when they start to arrange everything into one song, it doesn’t all fit, some of the songs are lacking cohesive structures and end up being chaotic garage tunes.
There aren’t many highlights for me, “Black Sky” and “Decadence” both surprised me with some Thrashy MESHUGGAH riffs from the old days of “Contradictions Collapse” and some of the solos are well played. “Enemy” is kinda like a tribute to ARCH ENEMY, the song fuses various riffs from “Silent Wars” (a track that comes off the “Anthems Of Rebellion” CD) together with the band’s own Hardcore riffs; it’s a cool idea but they didn’t have to butcher these great Amott riffs, what’s the catch with the rushed guitar playing?
You know me, I’m a lost cause in this sound. No doubt, “Songs Of Nothing” has something for those into this kind of music, but I think they can do better if they get a clearer sound and work more on the structures the next time they release an album. (online December 8, 2004)