Bart D. : The Finnish Kaos Krew are back with a new album, and this time around they have found a lead singer in Massi Wickman. Does this mean the instrumental parts get less attention?
The album doesn't start off promising: first track 'Planet Madness' seems meant to be the anthem touching the core of the album, and while it's a decent track, it's also a very bland track where nothing manages to stand out besides its driving tempo. Next track 'Be Our Hero' has some more guitar fireworks to cut through the grey industrial atmosphere. The rest of the album continues in the same vein: all songs are solid and produced fittingly, with a slightly raw edge. But despite the fact that there's no grave criticism towards any musician - the drummer also kicks the band's dynamics up a notch -, if not for the fluid guitar riffs and the liquid leads, this album would have nothing to keep it from oblivion. The lyrics often feel like a copy-paste of lines about a world gone to shit and a narrator keeping his distance of it all. Along with some imperfect use of the English language, the result isn't able to pull off enduring attention save a few nods when some universal exasperations come along. It's more fitting when they employ dry wit like in 'Fire-Eater' - it works better to nod you head to on the beat.
Due to the emphasis on vocal songs the adventurous character of Kaos Krew takes more of a backseat, even though there are still typical traces to be found. Lovers of bottom-heavy mid-tempo rock/metal should feel encouraged to give this album an enjoyable listen, expect however no artistic tour de force.