Released: 2008, Scarlet Records
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
If Italy makes you think of good food, beautiful landscapes, and the odd wonky monument, then that picturesque image is about to be blown apart by the sonic boom of Idols Are Dead. Yet despite the name, it’s clear their heroes are still very much kicking as they aim to evoke the likes of thrash trade names Metallica and Megadeth, whilst skimming the cream from newer acts such as Trivium.
Bringing together previous industry experience from bands Electrocution and Folder, Idols Are Dead clearly haven’t wasted any time since their formation some five years ago. In fact, by 2007 the band had beat off 2273 other hopefuls to take first place in the Heineken Jammin Festival Contest. Not to be sniffed at when the prize is sharing a stage with Slayer, Iron Maiden, and Stone Sour!
Back to the matter at hand, and ‘Mean’ is an album coloured by an un-surpressable hunger for the heavy stuff in all its various guises. ‘Let’s Do It!’ has itself a raunchy groove, whilst a bruising cover of ‘It’s So Easy’ demonstrates how Idols Are Dead lend themselves well to a smattering of sleaze.
There’s an air of cheese about ‘Dance With The Devil’ that’s probably more suggestive of doing the hoedown with the devil from ‘The Pick Of Destiny’ than with old damnation himself, but all the more enjoyable for it.
The rolling drumbeats of ‘The Name Of My Rage’ herald an altogether more straight-up metal offering, intershot with vocals that emulate the drawn out vowels of James Hetfield or even a roughed-up Wednesday 13. Storming in its wake comes ‘Proud To Be Sick’ – one of the strongest tracks on the album it’s a nice surprise to find it nestling alongside its close. With a head crunching opening that maintains a punishing pace throughout ‘Proud To Be Sick’ is the kind of infectious you can be happy about.
By no means are Idols Are Dead front-runners for taking up the prestigious thrash crown once it’s finally relinquished, but ‘Mean’ is a solid footing for any metal band. Whilst they’re not exactly not breaking new ground, neither are Idols are Dead just re-treading what’s gone before. Certainly you won’t be hearing the gondoliers singing ‘Mean’ on the canals of Venice. Not unless it starts raining blood.
Review by Kirsty Birkett-Stubbs