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God Forbid Gone Forever

By Chris Hawkins, Contributor
Monday, March 1, 2004 @ 1:38 AM


(Century Media)

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Itís been quite a while since God Forbidís debut for Century Media, Determination, was released. After touring relentlessly, the band took some much-needed time off, but soon, fans were wondering if God Forbid would reappear. That being said, it was surprising to find their latest release on my desk. Thankfully, God Forbid was not gone forever!

It seems that God Forbid have grown up with this latest disc. While that same Metal/Hardcore approach that appeals to such a varied audience remains intact, the band has taken their sound to the next level. The first step in maturity to be noted is the finesse, which God Forbid applies to their songwriting. Any of the 9 songs contained within could stand on their own, marking a much different turn than the albumís predecessor where every track seemed to be tied together. Take, for example, the title track or even the first single, ďBetter Days.Ē God Forbid maintains their intensity, but the beauty lies in the execution. When the band wants to play a Metal riff, itís blatantly Metal, and the same can be said for the mosh-inciting Hardcore breakdowns. Everything is on 10, and every note is purposeful. Metal fans have to appreciate a band being so straight-forward.

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A new side of God Forbid is evident in the use of clean vocals. Thankfully, though, they are employed with taste and never wander into the whiny, Emo-esque excursions of some of their contemporaries. Gone Forever does sound almost like a different band, though, in these parts. I suppose clean vocals were just a logical progression, but they proved to be a decidedly useful tool in producing an album full of such memorable songs.

The icing on the cake here is the dual guitar work of brothers, Doc and Dallas Coyle. Giving Shadows Fall and others a run for their money, these guys expertly blend Thrash, Death, Hardcore, and Classic Metal riffs into a stew of premium Metal excellence! I was anxious most of all to hear how the solos would turn out. These guys run the gamut of lead work from blazing shredding to pure, melodic style. Two guitar players with two unique approaches make for an unstoppable onslaught of lead guitar fury that is sure to dazzle even the most hard to please guitar fan.

Be on the lookout for God Forbid on their upcoming tours this spring and summer. In the meantime, Gone Forever is proving to be one of the first albums this year to earn the title of must-have. No one will be disappointed.

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