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Job For A Cowboy - "Demonocracy" (CD)

Job For A Cowboy - "Demonocracy" CD cover image

"Demonocracy" track listing:

1. Children of Deceit
2. Nourishment Through Bloodshed
3. Imperium Wolves
4. Tongueless and Bound
5. Black Discharge
6. The Manipulation Stream
7. The Deity Misconception
8. Fearmonger
9. Tarnished Gluttony

Reviewed by on June 10, 2012

"It was a long time coming, but there's finally a Job for a Cowboy release that has managed to fulfill any and all expectations."

It's hard to believe how much Job for a Cowboy improve with each release. While “Doom” was a rough start by any band's standards, Job for a Cowboy has quickly catapulted itself into the elite of death metal within only a few short years, despite an ever-changing lineup. While “Ruination” and “Gloom” were steps in the right direction, “Demonocracy” is officially the first great Job for a Cowboy album that absolutely must be heard.

While most death metal bands push out cliché B movie gore lyrics, “Demonocracy” is thankfully beyond that. Political lyrics are always going to be divisive, but whether you agree or not, it can't be denied that it's always a good thing to see bands defy genre tropes and take commercial risks in the name of integrity. Beating people to death with your own severed arm is already a tired trope and doesn't shock or excite me at the old age of 24. What does spark controversy is a sincere opinion expressed to the world. That is guaranteed to offend, spark debate and ensure that people actually manage to pay attention.

“Demonocracy” mostly sets its sights on media bias and the effects of wealth consolidation on the distribution of news. In an election where the mainstream media destroyed the candidacy of Gary Johnson by excluding him from headlines and debates, it's an issue worth bringing up despite there being no easy answers on how to solve the problem. At the same time, any mention of the subject is a step forward and the issue does exist, even though nobody wants to admit it.

Then there's the songwriting. Job for a Cowboy has managed to fix the biggest failing of most death metal; namely that it isn't memorable. “Demonocracy” thankfully doesn’t have that flaw. The breakdown in “Children of Deceit,” the guitar solo in “Fearmonger” and the ending to “Tongueless and Bound” happen to really stand out and keep the music constantly interesting. That's more than I can say about most death metal bands, who turn their music into a sludgy blur of monotony in order to out-brutalize the competition.

It was a long time coming, but there's finally a Job for a Cowboy release that has managed to fulfill any and all expectations. Solid writing, thoughtful lyrics and memorable moments have combined to create one of the best death metal albums that I've heard in years. Knowing how good this band is live, I'd be surprised if Job for a Cowboy doesn’t manage to expand an ever-growing fan base on this year's Summer Slaughter Tour.

Highs: Excellent songwriting, meaningful lyrics

Lows: Slightly dated sound

Bottom line: "Demonocracy" is a massive improvement over previous albums.

Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls
4.5 out of 5 skulls

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)