Various - _Fine-Tuned Disasters_
(Demonstealer Records, 2005)
by: Quentin Kalis (no rating)
This is not so much a compilation as a collection of EPs by an array of Indian bands, with a focus on the more accessible forms of metal (think nu-metal, melodeath, metalcore). Each EP is evaluated individually below.

Bhayanak Maut - _Malignant_ (8.5 out of 10)

This was an inspired choice with which to open the disk: their interpretation of metalcore may not be most original variation around, and their melodies may come straight from Gothenburg melodeath, but it is nonetheless an entertaining, mature and cohesive version that will give many of their Western cohorts a run for their money. Hopefully they will get further opportunities to prove their worth, presumably over the course of more than four songs.

Skincold - _Artificial Existence_ (2 out of 10)

Skincold are essentially a nu-metal band, one that embodies the worst aspects of the genre: simple power chords, annoying shouted vocals alternated with whiny vocals, and generally dull songs. Skincold are a bit better when they drop down several gears -- their occasional arpeggio is not nearly as annoying as the moshpit rhythms. And did I mention the near-rapped vocals on "4/20", which sound suspiciously like a reference to illicit drugs? Frankly, I struggle to find something positive to say about this band.

Scribe - _Have Hard, Will Core_ (7 out of 10)

Scribe are pretty brave in having such a silly title -- I'm expecting some shout along Biohazard-styled nonsense that imbibes the worst aspects of American "urban" culture. Fortunately, I'm spared this worst case scenario, but Scribe are still very much located within the sphere of nu-metal, as indicated by the Korn styled rolling guitar sound and latter day Fear Factory influences. Vocals are a deeper growl, resembling nothing that can be mistaken for rap!

Bitchslap - _Through the Looking Glass_ (5 out of 10)

Bitchslap possibly the most mediocre of the acts on this CD. They are not as bad as Skincold, nor do they reach the heights of Bhayanak Maut, but simply plod away at a couple of modern death metal songs that are simulateously bearable and forgettable.

Amidst the Chaos - _Catharsis_ (6 out of 10)

Another that are only allowed two songs and present a rather standard interpretation of metalcore. Like the preceding band, it is not bad per se, but the progression of the song is utterly predictable and there are no surprises.

Also included is a bonus track by Pin Drop Violence, which despite the presence of death growls, probably owes more to hardcore than any other featured band, and another by The Demonstealer, doing his take on metalcore and featuring the vocalists from all the bands on the compilation. It probably sounded like a good idea at the time.

The quality varies widely between the EPs, which makes it impossible to provide an overall rating that accurately reflects this disparity. Some bands are deserving of a wider audience, some are not.

Contact: http://www.demonstealerrecords.com

(article published 15/4/2007)


ALBUMS
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1/14/2002 A Wee 6 Various - Hellion Promo Vol II
1/14/2002 A McKay 7 Various - Colorado Colossus
10/19/2001 Q Kalis 7.5 Various - Beauty in Darkness 5
8/12/2001 A McKay 2 Various - Brazilian Assault
8/12/2001 V Eldefors 7 Various - Triarchy of Vasconia
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1/15/2000 M Noll 2 Various - A Tribute to Accept
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6/15/1999 A McKay 8.5 Various - Smells Like Team Spirit III
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5/19/1999 A McKay 7 Various - Straight to Hell -- A Tribute to Slayer
5/19/1999 G Sanchez 7.5 Various - Freak Animal Zine #11 CD
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2/13/1999 A Cantwell 8.5 Various - Full Moon Productions Sampler CD
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1/16/1999 P Schwarz 7 Various - Feuersturm Vol. II: The Ultimate Storm
1/16/1999 P Schwarz 8 Various - Wardance
1/16/1999 A Cantwell 8 Various - From Kaamos to Midnight Sun -- Finnish Metal Compilation
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10/1/1998 A Cantwell 7 Various - Songs From the Penalty Box: Volume 2
10/1/1998 P Schwarz 8 Various - Amduscias
9/1/1998 P Azevedo 6 Various - High Radiation 4
9/1/1998 A Bromley 7 Various - Call on the Dark II
9/1/1998 B Meloon 7 Various - Bestial Sampler: 1997-1998
9/1/1998 A Wasylyk 8 Various - Fiesta Comes Alive!
9/1/1998 P Schwarz 9 Various - Statements of Intent
7/8/1998 A Wasylyk 6 Various - Blackened III
7/8/1998 A Wasylyk 7 Various - Statements of Intent
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6/7/1998 P Azevedo Various - Peaceville X
6/7/1998 A Bromley 7 Various - Call To Irons: A Tribute to Iron Maiden
6/7/1998 A Wasylyk 7 Various - Voyager: 10 Years Nuclear Blast
6/7/1998 B Meloon 8 Various - Until the End of Time
1/1/1998 A Wasylyk 5 Various - A Declaration of Independence
1/1/1998 A Gaudrault 7 Various - Masters of Misery - Black Sabbath: The Earache Tribute
1/1/1998 A Bromley 7 Various - Untitled (ten)
11/17/1997 A Bromley 8 Various - Earache Unplugged 2
7/14/1997 A Wasylyk 3 Various - The Kanada Compilation
7/14/1997 Z Tsarfin 7 Various - Awakenings: Females in Extreme Music
7/14/1997 A Bromley 9 Various - A Black Mark Tribute
6/7/1997 A Bromley 8 Various - The Ozz-Fest: Live
5/13/1997 P Azevedo 8 Various - Out of the Dark Live Compilation
5/13/1997 S Hoeltzel 9 Various - World Domination II
2/5/1997 A Bromley 5 Various - Frozen Dawn III
2/5/1997 A Bromley 8 Various - The Absolute Supper
1/2/1997 A Wasylyk 9 Various - Beneath the Icy Floe: A Projekt Sampler V.4
8/12/1996 A Wasylyk 7 Various - Black Mark Attack
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7/17/1996 A Bromley 9 Various - Beauty In Darkness
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4/18/1996 N Bassett 7 Various - In Memory of Celtic Frost
3/14/1996 A Bromley 7 Various - Identity II
3/14/1996 N Bassett 8 Various - With Us Or Against Us
1/17/1996 G Filicetti 9 Various - Four Ways To Misery
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