Tuesday, September 4, 2012
The Gardnerz- It All Fades
The Gardnerz are back for their follow-up to The System of Nature. An album I reviewed with much praise. This time around the release is in EP format. Fortunately for all of you fans it still clocks in at a healthy 35 minutes. It is clear when listening to It All Fades that The Gardnerz are no "one trick pony". These guys all have chops with both their instruments and writing abilities.
As mentioned in my previous review for the band's full-length, for a melodic death metal band these guys sure know how to churn out some kick-ass riffs. It All Fades is no different. If anything this aspect of the band has grown. Every single riff on this release sticks with you immediately after hearing it. I also see some influence of Death possibly leaking through in some of the playing here. One of the best moments on this thing would have to be when the opening track "Don't Look Back" slows down and goes into some clean vocals. This moment just builds and builds until eventually we break back into the fast paced riffing featured at the beginning of the track.
Each track on this release is really like a journey. The EP is almost impossible to not listen to as a whole. It all comes together very nicely and flows with a vast amount of perfection. Not one track here is skippable. It seems as though the clean moments heard on The System of Nature have been added a bit more often on this EP. That being said the heavy moments have gotten much more intense and I really believe the band has found the perfect balance of all of their elements on this release.
While I hate to dedicate an entire paragraph to a cover song I really think the cover on here deserves it. The Gardnerz rendition of the Darkthrone classic Transilvanian Hunger is simply astounding. The track features beautiful female vocals throughout, not a single harsh vocal is used. The instrumental has a very clean, full sound going for it. It is amazing how The Gardnerz completely changed the overall sound of the song, but even with that fact, this very clean, beautiful version of the song still manages to hold the same atmosphere of the Darkthrone track. It's an amazing feat and a very mind-blowing listen. When I first saw the tracklist I was worried about how this would come out. Upon listening that worry is completely gone and this has become my favorite track on the album, and possibly my favorite cover song of all time.
Overall It All Fades is an amazing effort from The Gardnerz. I thought The System of Nature would be an extremely hard release to follow-up, but they really outdid themselves with this one. Needless to say if you are a fan of the previous album pick this up. Also highly recommended to fans of death/doom metal. This release is truly the definition of what I want out of a release of this nature and it is very good to see The Gardnerz always taking steps in the right direction.