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 Zarthas - Spit/Ignite (2013) Album Review

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PostZarthas - Spit/Ignite (2013) Album Review

Zarthas – Spit/Ignite (2013)
Violent Journey Records -- Running Time: 43:27

With all the pretty good to excellent albums I’ve been listening to lately I suppose I was due one that didn’t hit the mark and unfortunately for Zarthas it has happened with their second album Spit/Ignite. Hailing from Oulu in Finland they are, according to the Press Release “electrorockers”, mixing the metal, electro and progressive genres! Apparently the album “smoulders at first, bursts into flames and leaves only the ashes”!

I’m afraid all I can hear is an album that feels like a bucket of water has been thrown on it before the fire has even been lit! After an eerie piano and guitar riff start, which promises much, opener ‘Playing With Fire’ bursts into...nothing. It’s a slow to mid paced bore, with some pretty unconvincing vocals. In fact it sounds like the band have been forced to go into the studio to record it, such is the disinterest shown. This is not the way to start an album! This lacklustre feel continues for the next three songs and it’s not until the title track that there appears a small spark of inspiration and flame. Suddenly vocalist ‘Lauri Huovinen’ actually starts to put some guts into the delivery and it raises the song immeasurably. ‘Taxidermic Soul’ appears to continue that feeling, until an insipid pre-chorus and chorus, yet again courtesy of the vocals which spoil the song!

Then...something magical happens (at least for one song). ‘Instructions For A Perfect Nightmare’ actually does spit and ignite. It is by far the best on this album and a song that Alice Cooper or Lordi would be proud of had they written it. Please Zarthas, write more of these! After that the remaining two songs ‘Burnt Shadows’ and ‘Modern Day D:orian Gray’ return to the half-hearted feel of the earlier tracks.

In the interest of fairness, and to make sure I wasn’t just being a grump for the sake of it, I checked out Zarthas’ debut album ‘So Mote It Be’ (2011) and that seems much more alive and passionate, with the electro feel shining through in a much more obvious manner. Whatever the genre the songs just feel and sound stronger on that album. I don’t like to be negative about a band, and there are a few half decent ideas here, but this album really doesn’t do it for me, other than one song, and that is not enough for me to recommend Spit/Ignite.

Review written exclusively for Brutiful Entertainment by Rick Tilley:

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