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Suffering Hour
August 2002
Released: 1988, Active Records
Rating: 3.0/5
Reviewer: Cid

Classic Album Review

Yes, it says 1988. As in the year Seoul had the Olympic games. As in before many of you even knew metal at all. To say the very least, this album sounds as if it was recorded inside a cave or a forlorn barn somewhere around St Louis Missouri and even though I’m really not a fan of anything with ultra-crappy production I’m reviewing this. Why you ask? Well because this is a fantastic band and if we look at this album from the perspective of it being something like a late demo or something, you can probably get past the production and actually listen to the roots of one of the greatest bands from the late 80’s/early 90’s.

There are quite some interesting elements in this recording that make you put their latter offerings in a different light. For example you get a very varied collection of riffs that will definitely catch your ear here and there, the bass in this band is really well thought out and the drumming, even though it sometimes appears as somewhat overdone, is solid and even inventive. The real standout though, is without the shadow of a doubt, Kenn Nardi’s vocal work. As it will be evident in the stuff to come, his vocal gifts are many and great. Able to switch from a great clean vocal style to shrieking madness anytime he chooses, Nardi takes you on a wild ride that actually makes an impression on you that will probably stick for some time. On the downside of this album, the songwriting and structuring isn’t inventive (YET) as you can pick out a very shattered flow in this album (sometimes you’ll hear 80’s thrash à la Slayer or Metallica… sometimes you’ll pick out some stuff not unlike Pink Floyd). Bearing in mind this album was very probably recorded just after the guys got out of high school, this all is very understandable, and any album that has a song called “Frigid Bitch” is ok in my book :D

On a final note, I must say that this is a collector’s item and you probably won’t fall in love with it, but for serious fans of the band and people who like to know where what they listen to came from, this is a very interesting purchase!

Choice Cuts: Frigid Bitch (***1/2), A world to gain (***)
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