The Red Chord- Prey for Eyes (Metal Blade)
"Ah, a new album from Boston death-grinders The Red Chord!", you're surely thinking. "Clients
was so fucking awesome, I'll bet this one's even better!" Well, fork over whatever you wagered, because Prey for Eyes
does little more than make you wish you were listening to Clients
Not to say there isn't a heaping helping of what The Red Chord do present on their third full-length; the seemless fusion of Atheist-esque death-prog and abrasive hardcore in the vein of Agnostic Front is present throughout the record and is probably technically much better than on its predecessors. It's the magic that's gone. I know I've picked at that word a lot in my reviews: magic. It drives me crazy when bands with the chops to write some of the greatest shit ever recorded in whatever genre they so choose decide to throw a record together that is, while undeniably theirs
, doesn't possess that intangible quality which makes them great in the first place.
But I digress. Certain songs on the record are almost as good as the best moments on Clients
: minute-long grind opener "Film Critiques and Militia Men", blastbeat-showcasing lead singles "Dread Prevailed" and "Send the Death Storm", anti-canine euthanasia protest song "Bone Needle", and semi-instrumental closing epic "Seminar". The problem is, these songs all recall songs from Clients
, and don't really even do them justice. "Film Critiques" is "Clients" lite, "Dread Prevailed" is "Fixation on Plastics" lite, "Send the Death Storm" is "Black Santa" lite, "Bone Needle" is "Dragon Wagon" lite, and "Seminar" pales in comparison to its amazing counterpoint "He Was Dead When I Got There". If anything, the lyrics are sillier and the songs are much, much less catchy.
If you want to hear an album that faux-death metal kids everywhere will be worshiping (almost as good as the new Job For A Cowboy!), buy Prey for Eyes
. If you want to hear The Red Chord at what may sadly prove to be the best album of their career, spend about five dollars less and get the brutally fantastic Clients