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Temple Of Brutality Lethal Agenda

By Andrew Depedro, Ottawa Correspondent
Sunday, June 3, 2007 @ 11:19 AM


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If there had ever been some sort of just cause for Dave Mustaine and Dave Ellefson to part company on less than amicable terms during the recording of Megadeth’s 2004 comeback album The System Has Failed, laziness and a lack of initiative wouldn’t even be an issue. Since his departure Ellefson’s been heavily active in several bands such as Killing Machine and F5 to name a few who arguably should be able to compete with Megadeth on an equal scale of greatness. Temple Of Brutality are a different type of breed for Ellefson to tame here….hell, let’s be honest here, people; Lethal Agenda is a full-fledged hardcore CD that wears its studded brass knuckles on the sleeve of its blue flannel jacket. It occasionally doesn’t deviate much from the whole Hatebreed/Sworn Enemy concept of hardcore on many of the tracks but at the same time I wouldn’t completely dismiss it as just another hardcore album. There’s more to this CD than just angry lyrics and 6 chords.

For one, a listen to some particular songs like “Beating The Man” and “Isabel”, to me anyway, draw more vocal comparisons to early Morbid Angel and Brand New Sin who, last I checked, weren’t hardcore although the hardcore followers probably namedrop both bands a lot these days. Getting back to “Isabel” again, that probably has to be one of the first metal songs ever written about a natural climate disaster that I’ve heard in a while. Assuming it’s about an actual hurricane unless I’ve mistaken some mentions about “escaping the whirlwind” and “hammering everything down piece by piece” to be something else. Although I don’t know how that could be interpreted as anything else but. And while we’re on the topic of lyrics, the ones to the title track (“The way you work the system will be the death of me”) are probably some of the best I’ve heard off this album when the gruff vocals actually give way to sounding somewhat clean.

Elsewhere, the rest of the tunes are pretty standard thrash/hardcore material with some solid hooks and soloing that would fit right at home on a Brand New Sin CD that was recorded with the singer suffering from a tapeworm. So, in general, Lethal Agenda doesn’t break much if any musical ground but it sure makes good use of that same ground to host a giant moshpit in parts. I’m content with that if you are.

http://www.myspace.com/templeofbrutality
http://www.templeofbrutality.com

****

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