1. Devil's Eye 2. All Along The Runway 3. Powdering Squeeze
Grenouer are part of Russia’s long-standing metal scene that is only recently gaining recognition in the international community. No single group has been able to bring the world’s largest country, and it has instead been left to a host of obscure veterans to slowly build up the country’s reputation. From pagan metal (Temnozer) to progressive (Mechanical Poet) to death metal (Hieronymus Bosch) and beyond, the Motherland has shown itself to be a unique and noteworthy presence.
In their younger days, Grenouer would also have been a prime candidate for this task. Having formed in the early 90’s, they were evidently well established as a brutal death metal band with a significant following. However, with ‘Try’ it is clear that Grenouer have traded in their cloaks once again to keep up with the times, and the result is less than satisfying.
From brief moments throughout ‘Try’ it is clear that Grenouer have the technical chops to do some serious damage, and the beefy mix of this EP/demo would do wonders for any respectable death metal tune. Unfortunately, they limit themselves almost exclusively to chug-a-chug Meshuggah imitations that quickly become tiresome and continue Grenouer’s downward spiral into irrelevance. Some slight industrial tinges spice up these 10 minutes a touch, but they are limited and ultimately inconsequential. The band’s vocalist, Ind, also is persistently awkward, generally favoring an oddly strained shout and some harsher vocals that sound like an even more phlegm-plagued version of Pekka Kokko (Kalmah).
If nothing else, Grenouer have put together a nice package on this release, including a multimedia section that features some amusing snapshots of an English technician’s comments on their lyrics. Their music, though, (perhaps excepting their cover of A-ha’s ‘Take On Me’) does not equal their sense of humor for subtlety or appeal. Rather, they have played directly into the hands of gleeful anti-core metalheads everywhere who will rip Grenouer apart for hopping on the genre bandwagon a few years too late. To make it in today’s demanding scene, and if you’ll pardon the awful pun, Grenouer will have to ‘Try’ again and recover from their ongoing downward spiral.
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