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Killer Be Killed - "Killer Be Killed" (CD)

Killer Be Killed - "Killer Be Killed" CD cover image

"Killer Be Killed" track listing:

1. Wings of Feather And Wax
2. Face Down
3. Melting Of My Marrow
4. Snakes of Jehova
5. Curb Crusher
6. Save The Robots
7. Fire To Your Flag
8. I.E.D.
9. Dust Into Darkness
10. Twelve Labors
11. Forbidden Fire

Reviewed by on April 25, 2014

"If you love the different sounds that The Dillinger Escape Plan, Soulfly, and Mastodon all bring to the table, you'll be right at home here with this boldly different album marking a 2014 high point."

When the members of other well known bands come together for a new project, there's both a buzz of excitement, and a collective held breath: will this be an explosion of awesome, or something altogether limp? Whether a supergroup sticks too closely to its member's other projects or strays too far away, someone is going to hate it. Killer Be Killed strikes a fantastic medium between those two points, both making it consistently obvious who is involved while still offering something a little different.

The project consists of Greg Puciato (The Dillinger Escape Plan), Dave Elitch (ex-The Mars Volta), Max Cavalera (Soulfly, ex-Sepultura), and Troy Sanders (Mastodon), which needless to say is a pretty diverse lineup, so the end result really could have gone any direction. While this self-titled album shows a slightly different musical expression than what you might expect from these particular musicians, there's clear echoes of their various main projects.

Although not as abrasive or frantic as The Dillinger Escape Plan, you will definitely hear some of the insane math metal influence in there, along with a solid mix of modern metal, hardcore, and even hard rock. The tracks feature a balance of harsh screamed vocals and more rocking clean singing, and while none of the tracks are completely “radio-friendly,” there is an energetic rock sound in there that at times almost brings to mind the likes of P.O.D.

For a few changes the tracks occasionally throw in curve balls as well, like the electronic voices on “Save The Robots,” or the extremely slowed down tempo and increased length on closing song “Forbidden Fire.” At 11 tracks of lean songs mostly around three or four minutes, the album flies by without getting repetitive or overstaying its welcome.

The only real issue with “Killer Be Killed” is that the band has a minor identity issue – do the guys want to be extreme or mainstream? If you don't like The Dillinger Escape Plan and you can't tolerate anything rock oriented in your metal, then you can probably skip this, but you'll definitely be missing out. On the other hand, if you love the different sounds that The Dillinger Escape Plan, Soulfly, and Mastodon all bring to the table, you'll be right at home here with this boldly different album marking a 2014 high point.

Highs: Dillinger Escape Plan, Soulfly, and Mastodon all get mashed into one awesome project.

Lows: The final track doesn't quite fit the sound of the rest of the album, and there's an identity issue here with the mix of clean and extreme.

Bottom line: A supergroup that delivers - there's clear echoes of the band member's other projects while still offering something new and engaging.

Rated 4.0 out of 5 skulls
4.0 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)