This six song EP is the debut release from Midwestern hardcore outfit Arma Angelus. Formed in late 1999 by one of the founding members of the now defunct group, Racetraitor, Arma Angelus is somewhat of an oddity in the hardcore and metal genre. Listeners expecting something similar to Racetraitor will definitely be surprised. While some of the old animosity, both musical and lyrical, is still present, Arma Angelus sounds very much unlike the aforementioned group. Their brand of metal is actually quite eclectic, borrowing from hardcore, metal, sludge, and even Black Sabbath. They aren't flashy, and certainly aren't Julliard grads, but they've effectively harnessed their collective power to deliver some offbeat metal, particularly on the EP's second track, "Misanthrope". The track is very deceptive. Upon first listen it won't seem very interesting, not to mention it's downright gloomy. However, this song will grow on you. We guarantee it. A subtle mixture of nasty metal guitars riffs, doom-laden grooves, melodic leads, yelling, singing, it's various musical sub-themes are all nicely tied together without sounding contrived or chaotic. Throughout the rest of the album, Arma Angelus is uncompromising and relentless. However, they've also got some serious depth. There's really more going on here than meets the eye, and if one actually reads the lyrics, there really is some interesting stuff being communicated, regardless of the fact the vocals are almost indecipherable when delivered over the group's biting metal grooves. Bottom Line: Don't let an initial listen or two prevent you from digesting this record. It's an acquired taste, and certainly not overly accessible. On the other hand, The Grave End Of The Shovel isn't your average album and when it all comes down to it, Arma Angelus has actually come up with something oddly innovative. We dig it.
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Someone_ 10/19/2006 4:54:51 AM
Pete from Fall Out Boy and Tim From Risa Against are in this.