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Sulaco Tearing Through The Roots

Sulaco - Tearing Through The Roots
01. Middle Man
02. Pointing Out The Obvious
03. Summon The Hammer
04. An Eye In Every Window
05. Brunt Of The Joke MP3
06. Sticks In My Craw
07. Winning The Race
08. The Lone Chime
09. Model Of Inefficiency
10. Full Of Holes
11. Bupkus
12. Magee (bonus track)
13. Hidden Agenda (bonus track)
2006 Willowtip Records

Reviewed by: Cory   //   Published: 9/27/2006

Being a fan of Lethargy (and to a degree Kalibas), I was pretty amped to hear Sulaco's debut album Tearing Through The Roots. Perhaps it's the fact that I've been inundated with techinically-obsessed metal lately, but I just wasn't particularly blown away by this release. For all their talk about "the groove," there's just too far little songcraft and innovation here for the band's good. Unfortunately for frontman Erik Burke, his pedigree can only get him so far with me and Sulaco's music just doesn't push him much farther. Pretty much everything that's happening on this record is something I've heard before and most of it wasn't that impressive to begin with.

From the Mastodon-esque stomp of "Pointing Out The Obvious" to its overly schizophrenic follow-up "Summon The Hammer," Sulaco doesn't seem to have established a strong identity of their own just yet. Some segments could pass for melodic death metal and others for Calculating Infinity b-sides. While I understand that Burke's creative vision with Lethargy didn't predate the rise of these styles, his current work with Sulaco sadly doesn't display a similarly progressive slant. Instead, Sulaco's Tearing Through The Roots plays out as a muddy-sounding retread of the last five years of metal, jumbled together in an aesthetically bland way.

For example, "Sticks In My Craw" sounded like being trapped in Guitar Center with a dozen metalheads each taking turns playing a completely different lead. There's just precious little glue holding most of these songs together and it becomes too taxing a listen to be worth the minimal rewards. Even the disc's art and booklet design aren't worth trying to navigate, as the poorly chosen print style and color makes the lyrics sheet and back cover difficult to read.

Fans of the band will be happy to know that the disc does contain two bonus tracks, both of which were featured on the band's vinyl-only split with Soilent Green released earlier this year. I found these slightly simpler tracks to be a bit more enjoyable than most of the album tracks, so hopefully the band revisits something like "Magee" in the future.

Bottom Line: While it's true that Sulaco's full-length debut didn't blow my mind, it also didn't offend my sensibilities. There's enough talent to make this disc passable, just not much more. I wouldn't be surprised if Sulaco developed into something fantastic in a short period of time, but Tearing Through The Roots just isn't there yet.

Alex_   posted 10/7/2006 4:26:04 PM
Cory, you suck balls, if you don't understand the greatness of the last Sulaco.

Kids, it's a 11/10 album, don't read Lambgoat's crappy review.
Some dude with attitude._   posted 9/29/2006 5:05:57 PM
Sulaco kicks ass. I can't wait to hear the whole thing.
Where's my CD? Lon? Burke?
I know you guys are reading this.
See you Nov. 4th bitches.
Crif_   posted 9/28/2006 9:57:06 PM
Thanks for taking the time Cory. If you ask me, this band sucks donkey scrotum!
smokeoutloud_   posted 9/28/2006 12:45:49 PM
Riff-Vortex sounds f'in great to me, more noise, and more loudness. fvck, the mp3 sounds great, it's everything those shitty bands like BTBAM do but its way-TIGHT!!
ghetto_paul_   posted 9/28/2006 11:13:18 AM
this album is not spectacular, but still pretty solid. it's been done before, but then again Sualco does it pretty well. deserves better than a 5/10.

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