Landmine Marathon - Sovereign Descent
Prosthetic Records
Death Metal
9 songs (39:34)
Release year: 2010
Prosthetic Records
Reviewed by Goat

I can imagine the meeting at which the various members of Landmine Marathon decided to form a band. After agreeing that the best band in the world was Bolt Thrower, and that they absolutely had to make themselves into a tribute act, one of them spoke up. “But what about the vocals?” he asked. “Hey, let’s get a cute girl with an angry yowl, kinda like Angela Gossow!” someone else said, and so Landmine Marathon were born, a band that you (probably) and I have only heard of because of singer Grace Perry’s family connection to Katy Perry (probably not, although she does look like her). So how am I supposed to approach this without sounding condescending or like I’m trying to make up for being sexist by referring to, y’know, females? You see, this is one of the hardest reviews I’ve had to write in a while, not because the band are doing something amazing and indescribable, but because they’re absolutely not, and so there’s little else to write about but their vocalist.

Musically, this is exactly as mentioned, a Bolt Thrower clone with a dollop of Hardcore and an Angela Gossow clone roaring and screeching over the top, and whilst Bolt Thrower are indeed one of the best bands in the world, that doesn’t automatically equal praise. I love old school Death Metal, but let’s be honest, Landmine Marathon never get beyond a passable tribute. Credit where it’s due, Sovereign Descent sounds lovely with a deep bottom end and clattery drums, and Grace herself has a nice bottom end, er, I mean a great, vicious yowl that sends shivers down your spine even as you’re snapping it to the killer riffs! Yet even after the four or five listens I’ve given this album, I can’t remember a single song, nothing stands out – by comparison, Bolt Thrower are masters of the chorus and pack each song with more hooks than Kylie.

A decent effort, then, but you can safely ignore Landmine Marathon. I like lady singers in general, yet it’s always interesting, even outside of metal, that ugly female singers are simply non-existent. Would Susan Boyle have been an equal phenomenon if she looked more like Beyoncé than, say, Shane Embury? Would Arch Enemy have picked Angela Gossow if she was, to use the vernacular, a munter? I most sincerely doubt it. So until Landmine Marathon produce an album that suggests any personal identity or progress beyond what they show here, you can skip this as a product of hype over substance.

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Killing Songs :
nothing really stands out
Goat quoted 65 / 100
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