Well, this CD has been in and out of my stereo several times throughout the past few months. This is the only Demon Hunter album I own, and I’ll probably keep it that way. That’s not because I didn’t like this record; in fact, I really dig this record. It’s just that from what I’ve heard and read about the band’s two previous records doesn’t get me all that excited. I’m a big fan of melody in my metal. The Triptych has loads of melody, which seems to be lacking in the beginning of Demon Hunter’s catalogue. I really can’t stand to listen to bands like Cannibal Corpse and Deicide because, even though these guys are tight and groovy, they seem to stick to the upper frets of the guitars (except for the solos of course). I appreciate the talent, but I don’t get my rocks off on that style. Melodic metal can groove just as nice, yet I feel like the music is actually going somewhere. The Triptych has a great blend of groove and melody in my opinion. There are nice thrashy breakdowns in the vein of hardcore, and yet the riffs take more than single-finger power chords to pull off. Also, I really dig Ryan Clark’s vocal delivery. His growls are good. He doesn’t whine, and he’s semi-discernable. His singing voice is surprisingly good. He actually has some range. I like it. The guitars are tight, and the lead work is admirable (at least they put solos in the songs.). The bass and drums seem to do a good job. Nothing seems out of place. Some may think that the quality is too clean, but I can’t stand it when the mixing puts a certain instrument in the back/foreground. I don’t understand when a reviewer thinks that the recording doesn’t sound “raw” enough. If the band wanted to have a crappy sound quality, they’d release a bootleg of one of their shows. Now, some of the songs fumble slightly, but I think that, overall, the album is in the top of the class, especially for a year in which Nickelback, Staind and Papa Roach are still recording.
Finally, I’ve been reading some of the reviews, and it churns my stomach when I read that because these guys are presenting a Christian message, they are immediately negated from the metal community. True, metal is usually considered to be a “Satanic” genre. But I was under the impression that metal was started more as a counter-culture, much like punk. What’s more metal than a group of guys standing up in the middle of this “Satanic” scene and declaring their faith??? If you ask me, that takes true cojones. Metal came alive in the 80’s, somewhat as a giant middle finger to disco and other shallow forms of music. Lately, the metal community has sort of stagnated. The emergence of fresh talented metalheads is becoming few and far between. You really have to look to find an original metal act. Everyone is following in someone else’s footprints. Demon Hunter has the intensity of most modern death metal bands, and they are delivering a (relatively) fresh spin on the genre. A lot of naysayers say that metal and Christian can’t mix, like water and oil. But there is nothing in the Bible (ie-the book that states Christianity’s true doctrine) that says that if the message is aggresive, it’s not Christian. I’ll be the first to admit that Christians aren’t getting Christianity right. I’m not shocked to read so much anti-Christian sentiment because it’s rare to see a true Christian example in modern society. But I also think its ironic how reviewers write about how narrow-minded Christians are, and yet they don’t give Christian music the light of day. If the guys are doing a good job, why do you have to give them flack just because of their personal convictions? If it rubs you so bad, get out and play. Stop whining about how these “pussies aren’t really metal” because they don’t follow the typical and well-trodden path that most metal bands are using. I mean, they have a song dedicated to the US soldiers presently in Iraq when the “cool” thing to do right now is denouce the war. THAT’S METAL!!!!! – to state your opinion, even if it isn’t popular. What happened to the metal counter-culture????
Bottom line – If you like heavy music, and you aren’t a narrow-minded, ignorant Pagan, check this disc out. It’s got great groove, nice melody, a good mix of growling and singing and a positive message. I’m done 4 STARS
Heavy Metal Forever!!!!!!