Depraved - _Decadence & Lust_
(Warpath Records, 2001)
by: Pedro Azevedo (5 out of 10)
Twelve tracks of brutal death metal packed into less than half an hour is what Depraved present us with here. Death grunts are complemented by grindcore screams, which are typically used whenever the music speeds up, making it all annoyingly predictable after a short while. Depraved remind me of a kind of fast, punkish, grindcore-influenced death metal not far from what pioneers like Brutal Truth and Napalm Death once created. Production is adequate, but doesn't save this French band from coming across as a very derivative member of a much-explored genre. These guys probably have lots of fun playing this material live, but there's a limit to how much you can repeat the simplistic chopping riff with growls, followed by the blastbeat that starts with the grindcore scream -- especially if all your riffs and vocals are basically going to sound the same throughout the record. Depraved are reasonably adept at what they do given one specific track, but then they make the same thing last for the entire half-hour without even trying to develop it any further. Within the realm of death metal, what Depraved are doing is hardly relevant or refreshing at all, given everything that has been done before in the genre. I would therefore recommend this record exclusively to die-hard fans of the genre who just cannot get enough of the same thing. And by the way, regarding the album's imagery: personally, I couldn't care less about the band members' sexual traumas, and Depraved are really pushing the subject like there's nothing else in their world.

(article published 19/10/2001)


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