AlbumsNovember 29, 20117,344 views

Withered Memento Mori

1. It's All Said 2. Within Your Grief 3. Like Locusts 4. Silent Grave 5. Beyond Wrath 6. Fear and Pain that Cripples Me 7. Among Sorrow
2005 Lifeforce Records
Our score 6


I really hate it when one or two undesirable aspects of an album cast a bad shadow across the entire piece. That's what I deal with when I listen to Memento Mori, which is Withered's first full-length. There are two things that I don't like about this album, and I just can't get past them. To be fair, Withered has a good thing going on and I can tell their focus is in the right place. It seems like these guys are going for a sound not unlike Dismember mixed with a healthy dose of Southern metal. To me, this sounds like an excellent mix of styles and I think these guys could go very far with this. Many songs are upbeat or mid-tempo, and there are some very heavy, pounding, slow parts. These slower parts are great, and it's all accompanied by a strong vocal performance. At times, I'm almost reminded of Crowbar, though not as thick. The vocals are quite deep and are complimented by a midrange scream at points. The drum work (from what I can clearly make out) is solid and tight. Overall, there are some great dynamics throughout. I don't feel like I'm listening to the same song again and again. My first complaint is Withered's attempt at playing speedy death metal. Any time these guys try and blast through a riff, it sounds forced and unnatural. The picking seems weak, and the drums get ahead of the guitars at points. While these moments are few, they are quite obvious and put a damper on an otherwise great metal song. My second (and biggest) complaint would have to be the choices made for this production. I admire the attempt at recreating a Sunlight Studios sound, but this falls way short. I've listened to this CD on a few different stereos and the low end just bottoms out, which makes it difficult to catch everything that's going on. During some songs, it sounds like there might be a great, melodic guitar lead, but it's just so damn hard for me to make it out. Except for the snare, the drum tones are fairly flat and weak. It's a shame that Withered couldn't get a better recording. Their sound would benefit so much from tones that were more crisp. I know Entombed and Dismember benefit from that gnarly guitar tone, but Withered is neither of those bands. Bottom Line: This is a solid debut album for sure. I really wish I could get past the sub-par recording, but sometimes it can just ruin a listening experience. Withered has some great ideas going on for the entirety of Memento Mori and in the future, I would love to hear them explore more of the slower, sludgy aspects of their songwriting. Atlanta is only a couple of hours from me, so I'm definitely going to keep an eye out for these guys. If you aren't bothered by production choices, then I highly recommend giving this album a chance, especially if you are a fan of Dismember or maybe Bolt Thrower.


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carexinxslaughter_ 11/27/2005 12:36:39 PM

i like this album first post

OpenFaceSurgery_ 11/27/2005 2:34:43 PM

Despite the shitty recording quality, this still is a badass album. I would have given it at least an 8 out of 10.

slice your face_ 11/27/2005 7:57:47 PM

lifeforce has terrible bands

cryptic_slaughter_ 11/27/2005 9:32:27 PM

slice your face is on Relapse

darkexhorror_ 11/28/2005 7:21:41 AM

i have no idea how the two styles of metal on this cd work together - to be honest, it unlikely i'd bother to find out. lifeforce is a pretty dry label, living on the success of caliban and heaven shall burn these days.

poo_ 11/28/2005 12:44:33 PM

i'll bet the song by the secret is better than the whole album by this band.

dutch_ 11/28/2005 12:53:48 PM

boo! this album rules! the review is well written, though.

fartsandsharts_ 11/28/2005 2:58:21 PM

Yeah, what a wonderful piece of writing that was. Idiot.

TREE4309_ 11/28/2005 5:48:52 PM

What the hell is Memento Mori anyway? There's a band named that too, they did a split with Kylesa I believe.

Dyami, LIAV_ 11/28/2005 7:42:34 PM

Awesome album, awesome dudes. Better than a lot of releases that have come out this year...

holycitybradley_ 11/29/2005 7:29:57 AM

this gets a 6, ringworm gets a 9. get your priorities straight