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Album Reviews : Retaliatory Measures – MMX

By on August 9, 2011

It is hard to know where to start with MMX, Retaliatory Measures’ 2010 EP, largely because nothing really stands out. It’s not that the release really does anything wrong, rather it just doesn’t do anything exciting and makes actually listening to the EP without tuning out something of a difficult affair. Put plainly, Retaliatory Measures play death metal and, well, it is rather plain. There are some thrashy vibes at times, and they get their groove on several times through the 20-odd minutes of MMX but on the whole it is pretty simple death metal that lacks any serious hooks or other interesting features.

Now of course this is not to say that the release is unlistenable- it certainly has its highlights. The intro track, an instrumental entitled “Trial” boasts a Metallica-esque acoustic start, some nice melodic guitar work and a very smooth transition into the next track and makes a very nice start to the release. However from here the EP fails to really go anywhere- it doesn’t build on the solid foundation it laid down and just kind of walks around aimlessly. Everything is performed just fine but it’s just really dull- the riffs are just fine but make better background music than engaging tunes, the growls suit the music fairly well but are fairly monotonous and don’t leap out and grab you. The one exception to this is “Existence” which kicks the riffs up a notch and features vocals are delivered with some feeling. This song has some nice groove to it and is one of the few tracks that makes you want to bang your head rather than put it in your arms to sleep.

The lead guitar work is one of the release’s highlights with most of the solos and lead sections being pretty cool (especially through the course of “Existence”) and they also provide some nice distractions from the monotonous sound of the rest of the album. They are certainly not enough to make you want to jam this album again and again but the group’s guitarists know how to work their chops.

Again, let me emphasise that this is not a bad album, per say, it just does nothing overly interesting. Fans of the likes of Morbid Angel would probably want to at least give this a look, I wouldn’t expect to be amazed. 5/10

 Band: Retaliatory Measures
Album: MMX
Year: 2010
Genre: Death Metal
Origin: Ulvila, Finland
Label: Independent
http://www.myspace.com/retaliatorymeasures

Tracklisting:
1. Trial
2. Judgement
3. Existence  <- Reviewer’s Choice
4. Obsessed
5. Blank
6. Passing

About

Sam Maher is Metal Obsession's resident prog reviewer. He only likes songs that are at least 15 minutes long, contain 4 guitar solos and can only be described with a genre that is at least six words long. He also plays guitar for Sydney-based groovy melodic progressive technical death metal band Apparitions of Null.