AlbumsNovember 29, 201115,131 views

Throwdown Venom & Tears

Venom & Tears
01. Holy Roller 02. Day Of The Dog 03. S.C.U.M 04. Americana 05. Weight Of The World 06. Cancer 07. Hellbent (On War) 08. No Love 09. Venom And Tears 10. I'll Never Die A Poisoned Death 11. I, Suicide 12. Godspeed
2007 Trustkill Records
Our score 6


What we have here is a case of mistaken identity. SoCal's Throwdown, one of the handful of surviving bands born from that region's metalcore uprising of the mid-late nineties, have stepped up to the plate and done what no one in metal and likely no more than a few people in the hardcore scene thought they could do: Write a follow-up to Pantera's Reinventing The Steel. Frontman and former Eighteen Visions guitarist Dave Peters has traded in his Slipknot t-shirt for a Phil Anselmo body suit, and with straight-edge on his side, exhibits more energy and vocal dexterity than the burnt-out Anselmo has for the better part of the last decade. No one can debate that since Peters' move from guitarist to frontman for their 2003 Trustkill debut Haymaker, the band's profile has been rising steadily, with major tour opportunities, videos, and finally a rewarding jaunt on last year's Ozzfest being afforded them for their efforts. But for some reason, former guitarists Tommy Love and Matt Mentley are nowhere to be found on Throwdown's newest, Venom & Tears [editor's note: This is not factually correct - Matt Mentley is still in the band and played on Vendetta and Venom & Tears but wasn't on Haymaker. Tommy Love left the band in 2004 before the band wrote and recorded Vendetta]. As a result, whether direct or indirect, the album sounds less like the two albums responsible for the band's impressive rise, Haymaker and its follow-up Vendetta, and more like a Pantera covers album. With Dave Peters' having openly proclaimed as of late Pantera to be the greatest metal band of all time, one need not waste much time imagining who was responsible for the decision to veer so heavily into Texan Territory on their newest. Amazingly, Throwdown even manage to do a better job deriving nearly every note, beat, and word from the Cowboys From Hell than did the original ripoff experts, troubled Spitfire Records' artist Pissing Razors. Venom & Tears' third track, "S.C.U.M.," breaks out of the gate with a riff pulled directly from "Strength Beyond Strength," the opening track to Pantera's Billboard #1 debuting album, Far Beyond Driven. The opening riff of "No Love" is half Black Sabbath's "Children of The Grave," and half anything from Pantera's last great album, The Great Southern Trendkill. Then, on Venom & Tears' title track, Throwdown slows it down for the more reflective rocker, blending Pantera's "Shedding Skin" with anything from Down's II - A Bustle in The Hedgerow. You get the picture. All the riffs, the catchy choruses, and Dave Peters' continued vocal experiments still cannot prevent Venom & Tears from packing less of a punch than their previous two albums, though nevertheless an entertaining album for a few listens. The occasional hardcore moments, largely inserted as gaps between Pantera riffs, recall the band's early Indecision Records days of Beyond Repair and You Don't Have To Be Blood To Be Family. But even then, Venom & Tears doesn't flatten all in its path like Haymaker and Vendetta succeeded in doing. One of the reasons could be the shift in songwriting direction. Perhaps these songs could have delivered more on their promise, though, if Mudrock (Avenged Sevenfold) hadn't been hired to produce Venom & Tears. The songs are both improperly mixed and sound virtually unmastered. This album could have sounded huge had Zeuss or even Haymaker producer Ben Koller handled the knobs. Pantera producer Terry Date would have been an even more appropriate choice. Instead it sounds like the band is performing inside an oil barrel, and the recording equipment is glued to the outside of it. Bottom Line: Throwdown started off as a bunch of friends playing straight-edge hardcore for friends and family, with the majority of their lyrics initially covering those same topics. Years later, and ample potentially debilitating lineup shifts behind them, the band has made its most barefaced attempt at the crown of Pantera successor with Venom & Tears. They certainly pull it off more suitably than the bore-fest that has become Lamb of God. Still the fact remains that their musical peak was, and perhaps always will be, Haymaker.


Post Comment
anonymous 8/13/2007 4:18:29 PM

Pantera's dead. So is this band.

GayLord_ 9/3/2007 11:47:37 AM

Whoa, terrible

arty_mcfarty_ 9/3/2007 11:52:26 AM

its it really THAT hard to find people to write decent reviews? COME ON

anonymous 9/3/2007 12:10:50 PM

the review was fine

anonymous 9/3/2007 12:38:09 PM

Yea, I agree about Haymaker. 6 is probably too high a score for this record.

sacralplexus_ 9/3/2007 12:39:35 PM

shit band

fuckyoufags_ 9/3/2007 1:03:26 PM

this review is about on par with cory's normal gay shit

anonymous 9/3/2007 1:04:24 PM

this record is awful

Oswaldo Sanchez_ 9/3/2007 1:29:56 PM

Dave Peters never played for Eighteen Visions, Keith Barney did. As for Haymaker being their musical peak... I don't think so man.

Hellaween_ 9/3/2007 2:04:17 PM

This album is absoulutely terrible.

mefuckyeah_ 9/3/2007 2:28:52 PM

If memory serves me correctly Tommy Love didn't play on Vendetta and Mentley's on bass

pukeskywalker_ 9/3/2007 2:52:53 PM

I've said it once, I've said it a thousand times... pre-haymaker throwdown was an awesome band

anonymous 9/3/2007 3:32:00 PM

"Still the fact remains that their musical peak was, and perhaps always will be, Haymaker." 100%.

surfjam_ 9/3/2007 3:35:51 PM

"Still the fact remains that their musical peak was, and perhaps always will be, Haymaker." What the f*ck are you talking about? Raise your fist in the air... drug free.

lawofthesaw_ 9/3/2007 4:13:22 PM


Fuck Gluck_ 9/3/2007 4:23:25 PM

yet another reason why Gluck is the biggest gay that reviews music on this site. 6/10? You fruit. This should be lower than zero.

horseheadxbookends_ 9/3/2007 4:35:14 PM

Haymaker sucked!! They should have stopped after "you don't have to be blood..."

xxtoothbrushxx_ 9/3/2007 4:48:27 PM

man i used to be so into this band back in 2002.

grudgecityhxc_ 9/3/2007 4:53:57 PM

"Dave Peters never played for Eighteen Visions, Keith Barney did."....Yeah, Peters actually did play for Eighteen Visions. But, that's beside the point - this album f*cking sucks. 0/10.

ARCHITECTkills_ 9/3/2007 5:12:20 PM

Throwdown stunt doubles write a pop punk tribute to a Pantera album, turns the numetal scene on its head with headlines such as "dumb f*cking music for dumber f*cking people", film at 11'.

hotaction_ 9/3/2007 5:25:28 PM

wait. lamb of god? borefest? they may never write anything on par with as the palaces burn but i would take anything from their last 2 over anything throwdown has ever done.

anonymous 9/3/2007 10:06:46 PM

Can't take a review seriously from some dumbass who calls Lamb of God worse than Throwdown's shittiest effort to date

Mike_ 9/3/2007 10:18:07 PM

Dude, everyone was talking about how Lamb of God ripped off Pantera with the Redneck song and other ones from the new album. But it just ended up sucking because they wrote it for the masses (major label instructions). On Venom & Tears, Throwdown pulls off the Pantera shtick better. More active riffs, more dynamism in the vocals. It's just so derivative that it ends up being funny. But quality-wise, it's definitely superior to LOG.

michaelgluckisafaggot_ 9/4/2007 12:14:34 AM

Shittiest album... shittiest reviewer. Looks like this relationship worked out perfectly. LOG > Throwdown

shredemdead_ 9/4/2007 3:13:10 AM

blatantly ripping off pantera was the best decision throwdown ever made.

zombiesaretight_ 9/4/2007 11:43:22 AM

this band went down hill when keith quit. this album is god aweful. 0/10

name_ 9/4/2007 1:01:36 PM

I'd be willing to bet throwdown intended on ripping off Pantera and doesn't really give a f*ck

david_ 9/4/2007 4:08:50 PM

whatever happened to taking influence from bands rather than straight up taking riffs from albums? and whats with these bands doing this southern fried wanna-be pantera schtick as of late?? At least LOG are from virginia.. if you ain't from the gawdamn south, don't f*ckin' try boys!!!

Fur_Beach_ 9/4/2007 4:29:51 PM

shit f*cking review and album. Nu-Metal makes it triumphant return in 07 under the guise of "pantera worship"

solideogloria_ 9/4/2007 7:38:26 PM

I'm sure this album sucks, but I have to say beyond repair is throwdown's best album and will always be.

munderbite_ 9/4/2007 11:50:17 PM

I heard this album and it definately sounds like Pantera. However, A Perfect Murder did a more blatent (and poor) job of ripping off Pantera. Then, just when I thought it couldn't get worse I saw The Showdown on Ozzfest: biggest joke ever.

pedroeb_ 9/5/2007 4:41:13 AM

throwdown is dead ! good luck playing for metal and nu metal kids! f*ck your so called edge and so called hardcore ! you´re not a part of this scene

a_new_religion_ 9/5/2007 5:26:09 AM

haymaker sucked!

Akuma_ 9/5/2007 11:42:06 AM

Pretty decent review, Throwdown's last 2 albums were pretty good, but Beyond Repair is definitely their best album.

anonymous 9/5/2007 1:35:36 PM

i heard that dimebag guy died

Dimebag Darrell_ 9/5/2007 3:36:16 PM

Still here brah, I ghostwrote this shit for a million bucks. BLACK TOOTH!

tiger_ 9/5/2007 5:02:40 PM

f*ck. they have another one coming out? stop supporting this garbage.

Phil Anselmo_ 9/5/2007 5:47:48 PM

dimebag, your a goddamn bastard!!!

Dimebag D._ 9/6/2007 1:48:29 AM

f*ck OFF dude, your shit talking motivated that ex-marine meathead to kill me

fuck_ 9/6/2007 9:59:57 PM

how can you give an album that has riffs taken directly out of other band's material and still give it a reasonable review?! it doesnt matter what you think of phil anselmo: throwdown makes money doing things pantera did along time ago. to me thats f*ckin pathetic......

bill_ 9/9/2007 7:06:15 PM

thats the best review i have ever read!

DisturbedXgoth_ 9/11/2007 2:02:40 PM

You are all misled sheep. Hardcore is the opiate of the prep masses. Goth metal is supreme disturbed is darker and heavier than throwdown will ever be.

10010001011101_ 9/11/2007 8:06:44 PM

"kids may still sing along to your songs, but your words mean shit anymore" ^keith in 2000 > throwdown in 07 ....

xxxpaul_ 9/13/2007 11:41:25 PM

i actually think this is a great album its a self corss breed record. you got your haymaker and vendetta and new shit in here. i mean lets see here the songs hellbent on war perfect f*cking chugga hardcore song for haymaker fans, plus scum fast paste hardcore song and i suicide is also with fast rifgaye both for haymker fans then you ill never die a poisend death deffenate haymaker song with chugg but great different melody to. then the rest are all mis of every thing like vedetta and southernis

xkillcorex_ 9/16/2007 8:08:06 PM

honestly, XtdX went down hill with vendetta, haymaker was a bunch of older songs with Dave as a vocalist, i wasn't very impressed with it. Their best work was face the mirror EP and back. but seriously, this album was more of a disappointment than the new bleeding through... and pantera is best imitated by a perfect murder, and that's even bad... just leave redneck metal to the hicks

RK_ 1/26/2008 9:20:46 AM

im not a metal fan, i listen really various stuff, everytime everyday i listen music, i heard a lot of pantera stuff then, and im still not a fan of them even if i recognized the huge talent of them. the point is throwdown has make a big mistake doing this, because its already being made in a better way. too bad, this band had potential and this new album sucks heavy sht.. they lost their credibility.