Reviewed: November 2009
Released: 2009, Redfield Records
Reviewer: Kyle Moore, the Metal Magnus
How is it that many of the weirder things in existence originate either from Japan or Germany? Don’t misunderstand me – I adore the bizarre corners of both cultures and revel in the ease with which unique & original products spring to life. But like most rational humans, there’s a very faint line in the sand that separates the intriguingly quirky to the incomprehensibly unpleasant. The German self-described “Electro-Death Metal” twosome dubbed We Butter The Bread With Butter (WBTBWB) plays fast and loose around that line, and the result ping-pongs between eclectic entertainment and grimy schlock, all themed around creating a modern metal update of popular German children’s songs.
The term “Electro-Death Metal” is something of a misnomer. There isn’t much “death metal” in this album as I would define it; instead, we get a murky hybrid between deathcore and grindcore before the “Electro” bit even enters into the equation. The electronic elements range from mild keyboard underpinnings to lo-fi trance-style riffs that do a pretty good job of fitting in with the grindcore elements. Unfortunately for WBTBWB, I have an unfair distaste for pretty much anything with the word “core” in it, for no other reason than I find the typical sonic aesthetic to be annoying, atonal beyond a fault, and mostly bereft of meaningful musical growth. Prejudices aside, there are plenty of headbanging riffs and leaden breakdowns throughout, with yappy emo-core vocals that range from piercingly annoying to unexpectedly funny.
The vocals alone may make this album stand out amongst its competitors. If anybody reading this review has ever seen the YouTube video “Angry German Kid,” one can get a disturbingly accurate portrait of what the vocals on “Das Monster” sound like. Vocalist Tobi has almost half a dozen different vocal styles, ranging from a Laiho-esque shriek all the way to distorted approximations of a demonic pig grunting. What does a demonic pig grunt sound like, you ask? Something like “wreeeee, wree wree, wreeeeeeeeeee oooooo eeeee uurrrrrrrrwreeeeee,” but emanating from someplace likely in the horrible-most depths of Tobi’s colon. And it’s the pig grunts that ultimately elevate this album from the irritating to the humorous. Outro track “Extrem” begins as a well-aimed parody of typical grindcore microsongs that ultimately transitions into what may be the longest-growled (artificially or otherwise) grindcore pig grunt ever recorded. The whole track is not only a decent metal track, but is absolutely hilarious to listen to. The outro suddenly yanks us from the pig farm into chord-driven keyboards with a headbangingly epic tinge, providing the perfect ending for a truly bizarre album. “Alle Meine Entchen” goes the extra comedic step when Tobi yells “breakdown!” during a quick pause that (big surprise) leads into a chunky, turgid breakdown followed my extensive pig grunts. Laughter ensues.
To WBTBWB’s credit, they’ve created one of the most unique albums I’ve ever heard. Granted, ‘unique’ does not always equate to ‘awesome.’ Despite my initial reservations about this whole genre of music, there are some incredibly creative musical moments alongside plentiful mosh-worthy riffs and tons of off-kilter attitude. If you can stand the vocals and enjoy metalcore, this just might be the sleeper hit you’d never expect to like but grows on you over time.
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