Where is the time that demos were crappily recorded garage kind of things, on a tape that already sounded like it had lain atop a magnetic pole of sorts for a decade or two? The time is far behind us, and with exception of Darkthrone CDs that recording quality seems to be in the distant past as well. Which is, come down to it, one of the better things that happened to music in general.

Mandatory Suicide have released a demo on CD, and the sound quality is what we can expect from any contemporary recording effort. Although the drum production could have been heavier (I guess that's what happens if you listen rather too much to Dimmu Borgir's "Puritanical Euphoric Misanthropia"...), you can hear all the instruments clearly. That's the way any music should be recorded these days. In fact, "these days" refers back as far as 1998, for that is the release date of this CD. Normally albums this old don't get reviewed here, but I'd already started doing the review before I found out, so I figured "what the heck".

Come to think of it, this might be a demo but may just as well qualify as a 'real' CD. I mean, Slayer have for years released full-length albums that barely clocked 30 minutes, and "Demo-Niac" beats that by a few minutes.

Mandatory Suicide is a promising Dutch thrash band from Amsterdam. They boast a good drummer and have in their ranks the necessary talent to write good songs with innovative riffing. Their guitarist is a bit Hammett-esque at times, only what he's doing is better than what Hammett's been churning out in the past 10 years or so... The only thing I personally don't like too much is the vocalist, but hey that's a matter of taste.

The tracks on "Demo-Niac" vary from Slayer-inspired thrash ("Under a Reign of Lies") to tracks with a certain ballad ingredient that later turn real good ("F.O.B. (First Official Ballad)"). There's also the anti-war "Over-Control", with a pro-gun intro sampled from "Full Metal Jacket" that illustrates the way people in a war situation can act. "When Death Tolls" had great rhythm changes, and "World War III" is a cool track, too, though short.

I hope to be hearing more of this band in the future.



Written June 2001


Go to the Official Mandatory Suicide Site

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