Ghoul - Maniaxe

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"Holy crap! If anyone continues to compare Ghoul to Carcass they're stupid. In fact, anyone who continues to compare Ghoul to Carcass should be shot for being a lazy and incompetent fuckwad with no ear for metal, because aside from the vocals (be they nasty low growls or midrange sneers) this is a fucking blistering thrash metal attack like I haven't heard in quite a long time. The speed is there, complete with classic thrash picking patterns and hints of melody, there are tons of raging slow breaks, shredding solos, the works... Awesome. And what's even better is that this reminds me of classic American thrash - a sound that most contemporary bands have yet to successfully harness. I could definitely deal without the cheesy and unnecessary spoken vocals in "Ghoul Hunter", even if they do namedrop Anthrax and Megadeth, but pretty much all of the other songs are rippers, and the title track is so fucking badass that it practically makes up for everything. The cover of "What a Wonderful World" is pretty hilarious as well... who would've thought? The production is pretty nice. The guitar tone is damn near perfect, the bass plunks away in the background, and the drums aren't bad. They even have an 80's sort of sound to them - they're somewhat flimsy at times, but that fits believe it or not. I still think the guitars and bass need to dominate more, but it sounds very fucking good, so fuck it. The cover art is sort of reminiscent of Gwar, and the illustrations are all fucking awesome. But I honestly think the rest of the layout is weak just because it's sort of plain and doesn't fit in with the awesome lettering drawn on the front cover. I don't know. It's not a setback or anything, but it could be a hell of a lot better. Do you really need lyrical examples? All I'm gonna say is that "Boneless" combines the band's usual horror flare with skateboarding, so... choke on that shit! This is a great disc. I'd shit my pants if these guys would drop the humor and be a dead serious fucking thrash act, but whatever. I can't understand most of the vocals anyway, so I can deal with horror and gore as long as they continue to back it up with riffs like these! I really want to give this an 8/10, but weak tracks like "Ghoul Hunter" and "The End?" are a waste of time and really hinder the overall energy and impact that the rest of the album harnesses, making it a little bit frustrating to take in as a whole. This band keeps getting better and better, though. If they keep this up they'll rip everyone a new asshole or two the next time"

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