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Annihilator
All For You
Type: CD
Company: AFM
Release: 2004
Genre: Thrash
Reviewer: Eric Compton
Published: 11/1/2004
Just completely off target
Annihilator - All For You 2004 AFM Records/The End Records reviewed by: EC

Track Listing
1. All For You
2. Dr.Psycho
3. Demon Dance
4. The One
5. Bled
6. Both of Me
7. Rage Absolute
8. Holding On
9. The Nightmare Factory
10. The Sound of Horror
Don't get me wrong, I'm one of the biggest Annihilator fans around, but their newest release "All For You" is just completely off target. Jeff Waters has always been a bit different, writing technical metal pieces that some find confusing or just outlandish. The Canadian superstar has enjoyed a great career however, spanning ten records and two live albums. The group has always had a revolving door, making Iced Earth's lineup changes seem normal; five different vocalists and four record labels in their fifteen year history. Now they are at it again with "All For You", their first for new label AFM Records, and first to be distributed by The End Records.

What do they have that is "All For You"? Well for starters a new vocalist in Dave Padden, who replaces Joe Comeau, who managed two records in three years with the band. I loved the combination of Comeau and Waters. It had the perfect chemistry and many believe that Annihilator's best work was with Comeau at the helm. Now Comeau is a Where Are You piece, and Dave Padden is the full-time shouter. Jeff Waters is a veteran of this business, and he knows what his fans like. His scorching guitar can be heard on classics like "Never, Neverland", "Alice In Hell", and "Criteria For A Black Widow". Has his style changed much over fifteen years? No, not really. His writing has even stayed the same, but the production and guitar tone have been rearranged quite a bit.

Gone are the clean picking sounds of old, with Waters joining the new camp of distorted downtuners. Some of his riffs on "All For You" are very generic, making for a Pantera clone at times. The aggressive title track sounds like a cross of Overdose, Sepultura, and Pantera. Not the classic sound that could be heard from the group all the way through 2001. Dave Padden mixes the album up, which in some cases would be a good thing, but this new record is very inconsistent. At times Padden uses his Max Cavalera sound, evident on the title track. Other times he uses his Metallica approach, roaring out a James Hetfield cough on "Bled" and "Rage Absolute". My biggest complaint is his other two voices. On "Demon Dance" Padden uses a voice that sounds like a game show host. It is very silly, and sounds nothing like a metal voice. If that isn't bad enough, he chimes in on "Holding On" and "The One" with a voice that would only fit a boy band. I feel Waters did not make a wise choice in hiring Padden for this record.

The signature Annihilator sounds are found here. Fast speed picking that is a bit technical at times, with constant time changes throughout. Waters is still writing horror fiction with his songs, checking in with a mad doctor on "Dr. Psycho", while escaping from a mental hospital with "Both Of Me". But I don't feel that these tracks offer the album enough salvation. I can play the entire Annihilator discography without hesitation, but I can't seem to give this one enough spins. The songs are just uninspired, with a production that sounds muddy and a vocalist that doesn't fit. I'll continue to buy Annihilator albums though. How many bands can say they've released one turd their whole career?


--EC 11.01.04
About this Writer:
Eric Compton // Eric Compton lives in the most haunted city in the world, St. Augustine, Florida with his family and two yorkies. He has served as senior editor for MaximumMetal.com for nearly 10 years and is the author of the heavy metal book series--Denim & Letters. His reviews, interviews and social commentary has been featured on websites like Brave Words, Blabbermouth, Metal Temple, Metal Rules, Ultimate Metal, Metal Maniacs and Wikipedia.

Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details
5 Excellent - Buy it and say a prayer to the metal gods that you were tuned on to this masterpiece. A classic.
4-4.5 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a clunker or a lacking somewhere to keep it from perfection. You won't feel bad about dropping some bones on these.
3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler. This is the OK range where you'd search for the record on sale or used.
3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio. Could show skills but be dull overall. Redeeming qualities for indy bands are effort and passion. Majors that don't try or suck outright end up here.
2-2.5 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors. There is much better metal out there.
1-1.5 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
0 Terrible or an otherwise waste of your life and time.

Note: Reviews are graded from 0-5, anything higher or not showing is from our old style. Scores, however, do not reveal the important features. The written review that accompanies the ratings is the best source of information regarding the music on our site. Reviewing is opinionated, not a qualitative science, so scores are personal to the reviewer and could reflect anything from being technically brilliant to gloriously cheesy fun.

Demos and independent releases get some slack since the bands are often spent broke supporting themselves and trying to improve. Major releases usually have big financial backing, so they may be judged by a heavier hand. All scores can be eventually adjusted up or down by comparison of subsequent releases by the same band. We attempt to keep biases out of reviews and be advocates of the consumer without the undo influence of any band, label, management, promoter, etc.

The best way to determine how much you may like certain music is to listen to it yourself.



ALL FULL REVIEWS FOR: ANNIHILATOR
CD
TITLE BAND
DOR
REVIEWER DATE
All For YouAnnihilator
2004
Eric Compton11/1/2004
AnnihilatorAnnihilator
2010
Chris Kincaid5/2/2010
FeastAnnihilator
2013
Eric Compton2/20/2014
MetalAnnihilator
2007
Vinaya Saksena10/17/2008
Schizo-DeluxeAnnihilator
2005
Eric Compton1/13/2006
Ten Years In HellAnnihilator
2006
Eric Compton2/20/2006


ALL SUMMARY REVIEWS FOR: ANNIHILATOR
TITLE BAND
DOR
REVIEWER DATE
Feast - Limited EditionAnnihilator
2014
Vinaya Saksena5/12/2014


ALL INTERVIEWS FOR: ANNIHILATOR
INTERVIEW BAND INTERVIEWER DATE


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