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Luvers
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 10:34 pm
Posts: 327
Location: United States
PostPosted: Wed Jul 22, 2020 6:28 pm 
 

CHAIRTHROWER wrote:
Nice Demolition (Man) review by luvers, there...I'd a probably never have given it token whirl ("Bloodsuckahs" playing, now) without it...
Thanks
Twisted_Psychology wrote:
That glowing Anathema review is enough to make me overlook my concerns with that Demolition review. Both are pretty solidly written regardless.
What concerns?
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Lord_Of_Diamonds
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2018 5:23 pm
Posts: 249
PostPosted: Wed Jul 22, 2020 7:47 pm 
 

The phrase "moshpit focus group breakdown" in autothrall's new Machine Head review immediately made me think of Bitterman.

(not that that's a bad thing...)
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Absinthe1979
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Wed Sep 25, 2019 3:06 am
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Location: Australia
PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2020 5:12 am 
 

Twisted_Psychology wrote:

I mean, I am a vocalist with albums to my name if you want to play the game. But in terms of judging a vocalist, context is just as integral to a performance as actual ability in my opinion. To take the Ozzy example, there are pretty extreme differences between being creepy in the background Ozzy, shrieking mid-70s Ozzy, 80s pop idol Ozzy, and autotuned robot Ozzy even though they all occupy similar ranges. Lemmy was a great vocalist because his swagger and personality worked with Motorhead, not because he could've gotten away with singing Queensryche.


Great point about charisma and attitude. But I take it further, and I find it irksome when people point to Ozzy's vocal performance as an example of deficient singing technique. It's a ubiquitous example these days.

Obviously he isn't trained, but listen to his impassioned trebly wailing in the 'Sabbath Bloody Sabbath' album, or in 'Sabotage' - there is some very impressive vocal work going on. And what's all this about a wayward pitch? He hits the notes all pretty well to my ear, as he did live for a long time too. In fact, it was his uncanny ear that was one of his most redeeming qualities, from an era before autotune. He's singing over riffs from Iommi, Randy, Jake and Zakk that aren't exactly plodding three chord standards, and he sounds bang on the note pretty much the whole time. It's quite extraordinary.

It's the fact that he isn't trained that makes him so great and showed the world back in 1970 that you, too, can be a metal singer. You don't need a music degree; you don't need fancy lessons from some old lady down the road. You can nail those notes. You can hit those heights. Fuck the establishment. (Until he and his wife became the embodiment of the establishment, but that's another story...)

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Acrobat
Eric Olthwaite

Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2007 8:53 am
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Location: York, North Yorkshire
PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2020 5:49 am 
 

Yeah, I don't think Ozzy was pitchy in his good era. He gets a lot of shit as a vocalist, obviously, he was perfect for Sabbath in those days. Raw, passionate performances and very relatable, too. It's aged a lot better than a lot of vocal performances from that era, too.
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TheBurningOfSodom
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Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:28 am
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2020 7:04 am 
 

So yesterday I was writing another review, and while proofreading it I noticed a tendency of mine that surfaced quite recently. Basically, I developed a sort of intolerance to short paragraph ending sentences, that is, when a paragraph ends with a sentence that's too short. Ideally I aim to finish with one that covers the entire width, or at least one which surpasses half the width of the paragraph, and I end up rearranging the whole if I didn't succeed. Don't know if I explained that adequately haha, but I always become victim of my fixation for small details.

This, and keeping the length of the paragraphs approximately consistent (usually with the central ones, dedicated to the actual analysis of the content, longer), are my means to write a review that's aesthetically pleasing to me.

What are your thoughts guys, is there something you pay attention to in this regard? Do you think what I do is completely useless or do you share the idea? I'd like to hear some different opinions about it :beer:
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Ilwhyan
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Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2007 1:41 pm
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2020 7:20 am 
 

TheBurningOfSodom wrote:
So yesterday I was writing another review, and while proofreading it I noticed a tendency of mine that surfaced quite recently. Basically, I developed a sort of intolerance to short paragraph ending sentences, that is, when a paragraph ends with a sentence that's too short. Ideally I aim to finish with one that covers the entire width, or at least one which surpasses half the width of the paragraph, and I end up rearranging the whole if I didn't succeed. Don't know if I explained that adequately haha, but I always become victim of my fixation for small details.

This, and keeping the length of the paragraphs approximately consistent (usually with the central ones, dedicated to the actual analysis of the content, longer), are my means to write a review that's aesthetically pleasing to me.

What are your thoughts guys, is there something you pay attention to in this regard? Do you think what I do is completely useless or do you share the idea? I'd like to hear some different opinions about it :beer:

If you want to keep your reader's attention, it's good to give consideration to their attention span, and not write insanely long paragraphs. It's also good to not leave too many of your paragraphs very short, because the information can easily become too scattered, and it can be frustrating to focus on your piece. In that sense, it makes sense to keep your paragraphs of a consistent length. That said, it doesn't hurt to throw in a few shorter ones every now and then. Just like with shorted and longer sentences, it's easier to engage your reader's attention and interest by changing things up a bit, and keeping your writing lively. Some subtle variance in form can definitely help with that.

I guess a rule of thumb with both paragraphs and sentences would be: don't make them excessively long, and don't make too many of them too short.

These are just some general tips on writing - not related to or in context of your reviews, which I haven't read. :P
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Twisted_Psychology
Metal freak

Joined: Sat May 16, 2009 8:22 pm
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2020 8:02 am 
 

Luvers wrote:
Twisted_Psychology wrote:
That glowing Anathema review is enough to make me overlook my concerns with that Demolition review. Both are pretty solidly written regardless.
What concerns?


Sorry, I don't have actual concerns, I was just joking about how I don't particularly care for Demolition. You did a good job of elaborating on your points and I can always respect an alternate take.
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gasmask_colostomy
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2020 9:52 am 
 

TheBurningOfSodom wrote:
So yesterday I was writing another review, and while proofreading it I noticed a tendency of mine that surfaced quite recently. Basically, I developed a sort of intolerance to short paragraph ending sentences, that is, when a paragraph ends with a sentence that's too short. Ideally I aim to finish with one that covers the entire width, or at least one which surpasses half the width of the paragraph, and I end up rearranging the whole if I didn't succeed. Don't know if I explained that adequately haha, but I always become victim of my fixation for small details.

This, and keeping the length of the paragraphs approximately consistent (usually with the central ones, dedicated to the actual analysis of the content, longer), are my means to write a review that's aesthetically pleasing to me.

What are your thoughts guys, is there something you pay attention to in this regard? Do you think what I do is completely useless or do you share the idea? I'd like to hear some different opinions about it :beer:

Sure, if my first or last paragraph is the longest in the review, I feel uneasy in a sort of mentally dissatisfied way. Special kind of dysfunction, I assume. But, unlike you, I don't care how long my last sentence in the paragraph is; in fact, a short one often works as a good summary.
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TheBurningOfSodom
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:28 am
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Location: Italy
PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2020 10:45 am 
 

gasmask_colostomy wrote:
Special kind of dysfunction, I assume.


Couldn't have said it better :-D

gasmask_colostomy wrote:
in fact, a short one often works as a good summary.


True, in fact as I feared I didn't express myself as I wanted, since I was somehow thinking about the last line, not the last actual sentence. In other words, a paragraph perfectly justified for, say, 10 lines and the last which consists of only two words left from the last sentence urges me to modify it.

Long story short, to me, a paragraph with the exact same informations would look better like this:

Image

rather than this:

Image

(which by the way is taken from another review of mine, but it isn't worth an edit). Obviously not necessarily reaching the right margin, but at least half of the width. Hope I've cleared it up... and that I'm not the only special kid in here.

Ilwhyan wrote:
Just like with shorted and longer sentences, it's easier to engage your reader's attention and interest by changing things up a bit, and keeping your writing lively. Some subtle variance in form can definitely help with that.


I dig this, I'll try to keep it in mind. Thanks to both!
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Acrobat
Eric Olthwaite

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2020 6:18 pm 
 

Also, written English doesn't work in the same way as written Italian. I believe - correct me if I'm mistaken - that longer, run-on sentences are often fine in Italian (same for paragraphs, I suppose). Hell, in terms of length, even a one-line paragraph can be fine, if it's used for dramatic effect.
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gasmask_colostomy
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2020 9:25 pm 
 

TheBurningOfSodom wrote:
gasmask_colostomy wrote:
Special kind of dysfunction, I assume.


Couldn't have said it better :-D

gasmask_colostomy wrote:
in fact, a short one often works as a good summary.


True, in fact as I feared I didn't express myself as I wanted, since I was somehow thinking about the last line, not the last actual sentence. In other words, a paragraph perfectly justified for, say, 10 lines and the last which consists of only two words left from the last sentence urges me to modify it.

Oh, now I totally get it! It's not my specialist dysfunction, but I can feel the anxiety about that sort of formatting. My specialism is that a phrase of 5 words (or multiples of 5) is by definition better than any other phrase. Luckily, I notice it more when I'm reading than writing, unless I'm doing poetry or something with line breaks. :ugh:
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Napalm_Satan
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 6:07 am 
 

Acrobat wrote:
Also, written English doesn't work in the same way as written Italian. I believe - correct me if I'm mistaken - that longer, run-on sentences are often fine in Italian (same for paragraphs, I suppose). Hell, in terms of length, even a one-line paragraph can be fine, if it's used for dramatic effect.


I once heard that longer, more run-on sentences are more common in the Romance languages in general. Interesting stuff.
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TheBurningOfSodom
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:28 am
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 7:32 am 
 

gasmask_colostomy wrote:
My specialism is that a phrase of 5 words (or multiples of 5) is by definition better than any other phrase. Luckily, I notice it more when I'm reading than writing, unless I'm doing poetry or something with line breaks. :ugh:

That's gonna be hard to top :lol:

Acrobat wrote:
I believe - correct me if I'm mistaken - that longer, run-on sentences are often fine in Italian (same for paragraphs, I suppose).

Napalm_Satan wrote:
I once heard that longer, more run-on sentences are more common in the Romance languages in general. Interesting stuff.

As far as my experience goes, both true. I have studied a little French back in the days and friends of mine speak Spanish and Romanian, and there's surely a lot more similarity among Latin-rooted idioms rather than between one of them and English. The way sentences are structured and even the word roots are practically identical most of the times.

As for the sentence length, there can be a lot of variance indeed. Not counting the academic books I read at University which are at another level of refinement (and I follow pretty scientific courses) - but I guess that's got to be true for every other language as well - I noticed that even on some metal review sites there's a tendence to make things particularly lengthy and elaborate and/or to use words that are not so common in daily language. Sure, not everybody here is a fluent speaker/writer, but even considering every other English site I bumped into, overall I tend to read English reviews more quickly for this reason, I guess.
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BastardHead
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 9:36 am 
 

I don't pay attention to any of that shit mostly because I write the exact same way I speak, so run on sentences, three word contractions, and frequent parenthetical asides embedded within each other are things I never even notice even when reading other people's stuff (my FFVIIR review has a 565 word sentence in it and I wouldn't've thought to phrase it any other way (which this time is at least intentional to show what I'm talking about)).

The only time the way the lines shake out bothers me is when there's a hanging word or two with no text above it, and that only ever happens on my blog because I put the album art in the left hand corner and wrap the text around it. Otherwise yeah, y'all're weird.
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droneriot
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 9:40 am 
 

Yeah if by the end of the sentence I still remember how I began it it means there's something wrong with my writing flow.
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BastardHead
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 9:47 am 
 

By my own metric, Five_Nails is the greatest poster in MA history.
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TheBurningOfSodom
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Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:28 am
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 12:26 pm 
 

BastardHead wrote:
Otherwise yeah, y'all're weird.

Finally the voice of reason.

Jokes aside, I probably love your reviews for these exact features, they nail that perfect balance between professionalism and colloquialism.
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Sweetie
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 2:22 pm 
 

colin040 wrote:
gasmask_colostomy wrote:

Sweetie wrote:
My reviews are all projective.

What did this mean, by the way?


I'm sure he was joking. :P


I was :lol:
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gasmask_colostomy
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 25, 2020 1:25 am 
 

Sweetie wrote:
colin040 wrote:

Sweetie wrote:
My reviews are all projective.


I'm sure he was joking. :P


I was :lol:

Lol but I still don't get it :lol:
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Sweetie
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 25, 2020 10:55 pm 
 

It's a made up word. Literally a pointless joke for the amusement of me at the expense of anyone involved in that ridiculous conversation.
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gasmask_colostomy
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 26, 2020 3:34 am 
 

Sweetie wrote:
It's a made up word. Literally a pointless joke for the amusement of me at the expense of anyone involved in that ridiculous conversation.

:brick:

We're gonna have words, Sweetie, you and I.

Hopefully not words like 'projective'.
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Slater922
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 27, 2020 12:56 pm 
 

Thought my RIB review was bad? This one gave the album a 45%.

EDIT: Looks like he deleted the review. :???:
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Lord_Of_Diamonds
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 27, 2020 1:09 pm 
 

I finally re-wrote my review for In Flames' "The Jester Race".
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Metantoine
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 27, 2020 3:35 pm 
 

Slater922 wrote:
Thought my RIB review was bad? This one gave the album a 45%.

EDIT: Looks like he deleted the review. :???:

Feel free to do the same!

Anyone remembers the scene in Mandy where Nick Cage forges himself a fucking war axe in his basement? I feel like doing the same thing in preparation for whoever reviews RIB again.
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Demon Fang
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2020 2:46 am 
 

South of Heaven's more interesting, anyway.

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Absinthe1979
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Joined: Wed Sep 25, 2019 3:06 am
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 7:47 am 
 

Lord_Of_Diamonds wrote:
I finally re-wrote my review for In Flames' "The Jester Race".


I think your review needs more editing. I wouldn't have said anything, but you've posted it here, so I presume you're after feedback.

You say, "This record is stuffed and bloated with harmony after harmony, melody after melody, often with guitar parts so layered that they would need four guitarists to be reproduced live. On their own, the guitar riffs aren't bad. They sound a lot like power metal at times and are quite catchy"

In Flames were a melodic band and made it their business to write super melodic music in the mid-90s when it wasn't really a done thing - that was their highest quality. They are deliberately melodic! Don't blame a duck for swimming in water.

Why are you phrasing the idea that they would require four guitarists to recreate a track as a negative? Not only is this a strange accustion to label at a band, it also doesn't really ring true with this album.

Do you really think the riffs from 'The Jester Race' "sound a lot like power metal"? Because 'The Jester Race' isn't exactly screaming power metal to me.

You suggest that 'Chainheart Machine' by Soilwork is a better bet, but that came out 4 years later! Four years in the 90s was an eternity. 'Chainheart' is the product of the rapid advancements in late 90s melodeath and drew heavily from In Flames in the first place.

Just my thoughts at any rate.


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Sweetie
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 8:23 am 
 

People that dislike Still Not Black Enough upset me. The songwriting on that is incredible
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bayern
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 8:38 am 
 

Sweetie wrote:
People that dislike Still Not Black Enough upset me. The songwriting on that is incredible




Yeeaahh...

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Sweetie
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 10:15 am 
 

It's even sadder when both of the negative reviews are from writers I like :(

Real talk though, I was about to embark on a W.A.S.P. run next but to be honest, I need another break from reviews. It's been getting less fun lately.
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bayern
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 12:01 pm 
 

Sweetie wrote:
People that dislike Still Not Black Enough upset me. The songwriting on that is incredible


Not sweet enough for you, Sweetie... not sweet enough

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Sweetie
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 3:56 pm 
 

Demon Fang wrote:
South of Heaven's more interesting, anyway.


Scrolled past this due to being eager to mention that W.A.S.P. review, but, FUCKING YES
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droneriot
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 4:11 pm 
 

I'm not at all into ranking 80s Slayer albums. I consider South of Heaven perfect and the best, too, but I wouldn't feel like arguing which fraction of an inch from perfect the others are. I'd probably rate Reign in Blood 100%, too, but only because I only rate in steps of five, otherwise I'd give it 98-99%. But it's really pointless to think about, it's for all practical intents and purposes perfect.
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Sweetie
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 5:06 pm 
 

Nah I love ranking albums, it's one of my favorite gateways into musical discussion. Regarding the first 5 albums?
1. Show Now Mercy - 100%
2. Seasons In The Abyss - 98%
3. South Of Heaven - 91%
4. Reign In Blood - 89%
5. Hell Awaits - 86%

(something like that)
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bayern
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 9:42 pm 
 

1. South Of Heaven - 100%
2. Reign In Blood - 97%
3. Seasons in the Abyss - 93%
4. Hell Awaits - 92%
5. Show No Mercy - 84%

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droneriot
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 10:17 pm 
 

Sure for me it just ends up like that:

1. South of Heaven - 100%
2. Hell Awaits - 100%
3. Reign in Blood - 100%
4. Show No Mercy - 95%
5. Seasons in the Abyss - 35%

Not much point to rank if the top three are the same.
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Sweetie
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2020 8:46 am 
 

WOW! All the hate for Seasons? That's a hot take if there ever was one. Especially if you like South Of Heaven, usually people love the two or dislike the two.
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droneriot
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2020 8:49 am 
 

Then why are the review averages 88 vs 77? Can't be that hot a take if it's that clear a difference.
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Napalm_Satan
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2020 9:38 am 
 

Sweetie wrote:
WOW! All the hate for Seasons? That's a hot take if there ever was one. Especially if you like South Of Heaven, usually people love the two or dislike the two.


It's not remotely that clear cut. I've heard just as many people describe it as their fifth classic as I have people say it's a significant step down from the previous 4 (sometimes those two takes intersect even, calling it a lesser album but still worthy of their name); a demarcation of line of sorts in their catalogue. I for one think South of Heaven is tied for their best album but Seasons is merely above average.

And I don't really see why liking one would go hand in hand with liking the other, the two sound quite distinct from one another. South of Heaven is truly atmospheric, morbid and dark, as well as more mid-tempo and measured with only a few outright barn burners on the album. Seasons is the first album in their catalogue where that atmosphere really melted away; it's a lot thrashier at points and a lot groovier and more tepid at others, and it lacks a consistent identity throughout beyond being mostly also-ran. The only song that is really in league with South of Heaven on Seasons is the title track, which is similarly gloomy and measured.
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2020 10:08 am 
 

Napalm_Satan wrote:
The only song that is really in league with South of Heaven on Seasons is the title track, which is similarly gloomy and measured.


This is War Ensemble erasure.

Anyway I think it's pretty obvious why Seasons is seen as both part of the classic era while still being the worst of the bunch. It had the same lineup, same aesthetic, same musical approach, etc as South of Heaven, but simply doesn't hit the same. My personal view is that it has two classics in War Ensemble and the title track, and Dead Skin Mask is a blatant rehash of Mandatory Suicide that only kinda works on record but is a behemoth live, but the rest of it is kinda in one ear and out the other. It's basically an alternate dimension's take on South of Heaven where it's more or less the same thing but not as good. It was my first Slayer and I have nostalgia for it (I spent years thinking the guitarists names were "Banneman" and "Ring" because the gothic font in the booklet was fucking illegible) but it's clearly the weakest of the first five and I'd take any of their 80s material over it.
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Napalm_Satan
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Joined: Sat Apr 18, 2015 4:27 pm
Posts: 3549
Location: London, England, United Kingdom
PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2020 10:30 am 
 

Honestly I was never that big on 'War Ensemble'. Yeah, it's fast and has riffs, but it doesn't hit nearly as hard as other songs in the same style from earlier or later in their catalogue. They even do it better on the very same album; I'd take 'Born of Fire' and 'Hallowed Point' over it any day. It's a fine song, relatively speaking one of the better ones on the album, but not on the level of the standouts to me.

But yeah, it is clear why people view it as the last classic or at least bunch the first 5 together like that.

I also didn't know 'Dead Skin Mask' was so good live, the studio rendition is tepid and dull, as well as more silly than menacing. It is at least a touch more memorable and interesting than a total snoozer like 'Expendable Youth'.
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