Thrash Hits

February 8th, 2012

Album: Caliban – I Am Nemesis

Caliban 2012 promo photo Thrash Hits

Caliban
I Am Nemesis
Century Media
03 February 2012

by Dan Pelic

What Caliban does nowadays is done….a lot. But, hell….they do it well. Caliban’s first properly issued LP, Vent, released back in 2001, was an instant metalcore classic, not only for its raw and penetrating sound, but for the band’s teetotaler views – refusing the very fermented beverage Germany is most known for.

Fast-forward to more than a decade later, the band no longer openly claims the Edge, and have allowed clean-singing to infiltrate their repertoire… ::shudders::

Caliban I Am Nemesis album cover artwork packshot 400px Thrash Hits

Century Media cleaned ’em up real nice in an effort to expand their fanbase since co-releasing 2007’s The Awakening with Roadrunner Records, and the worldwide release of Say Hello To Tragedy, the band’s mediocre 2009 effort. I Am Nemesis, however, shows the band’s ruthless old habits have wormed their way up through the shiny surface of this standard, big-budget commercial recording, to make this album an exceptionally vocally-raw, heavy, mosh-breakdown-laden gem of a record.

‘Edge of Black’ is the best example of the fusion of the melodic-metal “friendly sound” that bigger independent labels have been chasing, and that of the sore throat vocals and smart and sensible (and not the overdone ridiculous moshcore) breakdowns that tend to make the more casual metal listener run scared. Of course, though, they must appease the prior-mentioned mall-metal wieners by throwing some generic clean vocals in there.

Watch the video to ‘Memorial’ by Caliban:

So yes, you’re getting a very 2012 sounding metalcore album. But, you’re also getting one that is a tad edgier and less “all-purpose” because Caliban have been around the block and still retain some of that integrity which persistently bleeds through. This is definitely an improvement over the last record, which was boring for a band with a history of consistent delivery. We’re getting there. I’m already looking forward to the next release, when they actually nail the happy medium between making a living on a big label, and recapturing the rawness that got them noticed in the first place.

4/6

Sounds Like: Chimaira, All That Remains, Unearth
Standout Tracks: Edge of Black, Open Letter, This Oath

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