Gross Misconduct – The Process Of Indoctrination

‘The Process Of Indoctrination’ is quite a fine debut album. This band’s style of melodic yet aggressive death/thrash draws influences from sources as varied as Kreator, Cephalic Carnage, Vader, and a myriad of other artists. The package is cohesive yet varied, and possesses a great deal of technicality as well as a very solid grasp of songwriting. Already the band is extremely professional, with top-notch production and playing present on this CD, and the delivery of the music as a whole is very compelling and strong throughout.

Riffing alternates between more complex, somewhat melodic lead work and straightforward, buzzsaw thrash riffing, and that alternation is used very effectively, with unexpected turns between complexity and simplicity entering at perfect intervals and short, frantic solos bursting out from nowhere. Stop/start rhythms intersect with longer streams of notes, adding yet another layer of complexity to the music, though they are never employed in a metalcore or Meshuggah-esque fashion. The drumming is similarly complex and fill-laden, with a powerful style of playing and a good level of speed and technicality adding yet more to the music. Vocals, though somewhat buried by the guitar-heavy production, are quality, if probably the most standard of the elements here: they’re a shouting growl that does the job well, but doesn’t really stand out, nor should it. Though the band does get quite melodic at times, most obviously on ‘Abhorrence’, they never get cloying, even though many of the melodies employed are Gothenburg-based in nature.

The lengthier nature of the tracks on this LP give the music a bit more room to progress and breathe. Each track moves through a sequential set of ideas without ever dawdling around or doing nothing. At the same time, the band never feels the need to get everything out of the way too quickly; while the idea of death/thrash metal does imply a sort of barreling aggression and absolute dedication to all things straightforward and linear, Gross Misconduct is a great deal more thoughtful and musically complex than you would expect at first glance. The album is very multidimensional and none of the songs are overly simple; it is a release that can be listened to time and time again, with each new listen revealing yet more elements of the music previously unnoticed.

This is a very well-rounded LP, and all its flaws are mostly a matter of degree; it’s not the best album ever made. It’s merely very good. It doesn’t shine your shoes or perform fellatio on you either, though the latter could be approximated using the hole in the center of the disc it comes on. But anyway, ‘The Process Of Indoctrination is a very good debut from a very promising band, and I’m looking forward to yet more high quality music from them in the future.

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~ by noktorn on October 24, 2007.

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