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Cursed "One" CD

Cursed - One

Hot damn... this Canadian act features the former vocalist of The Swarm, Left For Dead, and Ruination... but that's really not important. What's important is that this is some sickeningly heavy hardcore/punk with a brutal melodic edge, gruff vocal shouts, and memorable songwriting. It's not really what I expected... I don't know what I expected really, but this is a lot heavier, a lot darker, and a lot more forceful than what I had in mind. They're definitely taking a few cues from the His Hero is Gone school both vocally and musically, but there's more to it than that, and this is by no means another copycat band. The mix of faster tempos and bludgeoning slow riffs blending straightforward chord progressions with discordant metal riffing is cool as well, especially since most of the songs hover at around two minutes. A couple of the songs run more than six minutes though, and they still get the job done - the fifth track is an untitled instrumental (with some samples), but it's completely powerful and almost catchy in a strange way. Also present is "Guilt Parade", which was originally by The Swarm, though I don't believe I've heard their rendition so I can't compare the two. The production is pretty damn good. The drums sound tight, the bass is there in the distance adding a lot of low-end thickness, and the guitar tone is heavy as fuck with tons of rugged texture adding some grit to the mix. The vocals sound perfect too, and the mix of vocal and guitar textures is really fucking killer. Good stuff. I wouldn't really change anything. I love the minimal layout. The CD comes in a matte digipack, and the entire layout is in high contrast black and white. The digipack itself has some decorative images of vines and flowers across the center spread with an ornate Roman numeral I on the front cover. The booklet has some interesting imagery that I can't exactly explain, and then the lyrics are inside in straight white text over a blank black background. The lyrics mix the personal and the subtly political, so one minute it's, "You could teach a razor blade a thing or two about suicide." and the next it's, "God and Country sold you out, and fed you scapegoats for your doubts." This one's definitely worth checking out. Don't expect a rerun of the vocalist's past bands by any means, but I like this better than both Ruination and what I remember hearing from The Swarm and Left for Dead, so... (7/10)
Running time - 32:32, Tracks: 11
[Notable tracks: Polygraph, the untitled instrumental, Negative Two Point Five, Another Day]
Deathwish Inc. - http://www.deathwishinc.com

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Other "Cursed" releases reviewed (1):
Cursed "Two" CD [Goodfellow] (January 18, 2005)

Reviews with a reference to "Cursed" (3):
St. Hood "Sanctified" CD [Full House] (July 26, 2005)
Nightrage "Sweet Vengeance" CD [Century Media] (February 01, 2004)
Last Year "Pictures, Letters & Memories" CD [Goodlife] (February 01, 2003)

Other reviews from the label "Deathwish" (17):
Doomriders "Black Thunder" CD [Deathwish] (August 30, 2005)
Modern Life is War "Witness" CD [Deathwish] (July 21, 2005)
Embrace Today "We Are the Enemy" CD [Deathwish] (July 21, 2005)
Blacklisted "We're Unstoppable" CD [Deathwish] (June 07, 2005)
Nine "Killing Angels" CD [Deathwish] (December 22, 2004)
The Power & The Glory "Call Me Armageddon" CD [Deathwish] (August 13, 2004)
Cast Aside "The Struggle" CD [Deathwish] (August 12, 2004)
100 Demons "s/t" CD [Deathwish] (May 01, 2004)
Sex Positions "s/t" CD [Deathwish] (May 01, 2004)
The Blinding Light "The Ascension Attempt" CD [Deathwish] (May 01, 2004)
Some Girls "All My Friends Are Going Death" CD [Deathwish] (February 01, 2004)
Ringworm "The Promise" CD [Deathwish] (October 01, 2003)
A Life Once Lost "A Great Artist" CD [Deathwish] (October 01, 2003)
Integrity "To Die For" CD [Deathwish] (October 01, 2003)
Breather Resist "Only in the Morning" CD [Deathwish] (September 01, 2003)
Embrace Today "Soldiers" CD [Deathwish] (September 01, 2003)
Converge "Unloved and Weeded Out" CD [Deathwish] (May 01, 2003)
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