Genesis, Job For a Cowboy’s debut full-length, managed to sell about 13,000 units and landed at #54 on the Billboard charts. I’m sure there are a number of metalheads, myself included, that heard that and said, “How?” Starting off as a deathcore band, the band released the Doom EP back in 2005 and made a decent amount of success on websites such as Myspace and YouTube. My only exposure to the band had been with their announcement on this summer’s Sounds of the Underground. Background aside, the question remains, does Genesis live up to the hype it’s receiving?
I’m sorry to disappoint, but I’ve got to scratch my head and wonder why this band is receiving such praise. Apparently, the Doom EP was full of breakdowns and the standard pig squeal vocals and they ‘matured’ into death metal for their debut. On some levels, the band does deserve some credit for dropping the ‘core’ elements, but this is death metal by numbers. After listening to this a few times, the only words that come to mind are generic and dull. This is death metal that would have been considered stagnant 10 years ago, let alone in 2007. None of the riffs stand out and predictably, the songs blend into each other. The only track that stands apart from the pack is “The Divine Falsehood”, which moves at a slower and epic pace. The remainder of the tracks alternately blast and mid-tempo chug their way through, with barely any remarkable soloing to boot (“Martyrdom Unsealed” being an exception). Add to the fact that there are two throwaway intrumental tracks tossed in lowers the running time to about 26 minutes, which is a tad short, even for death metal.
Any seasoned death metal veteran will know to shy away from this one, while fans of the Doom EP may find themselves disappointed by the changes made to the band’s sound. Sure, it’s not a bad record, but given the hype preceding it, it just doesn’t hold up to the standards. The notion could be made that JFAC could push some scene hipsters into real death metal, but let’s face it, that rarely occurs. One thing’s for sure, there’s plenty more well-executed and deserving death metal albums worthy of your time than Genesis.