"Display Your Prey" (Self-produced; 2006)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

For many long years I’ve never understood the public fascination with David Hasselhoff. In recent years I’ve struggled to understand the public fascination with talent competitions like "American Idol." So you can imagine my sheer lack of comprehension of a show like "America’s Got Talent" – an "Idol"-like talent show starring David Hasselhoff!

Regardless, curiosity always gets the cat. Recently, I had to see for myself what America’s Got Talent is like - if only to gain understanding of this particular combination and pop culture phenomenon. To my surprise, I ended up feeling sympathy toward Hasselhoff. That poor bastard is going through what I go through constantly when reviewing unsigned acts. I often think, How can I say what needs to be said without trashing a band and somehow providing positive feedback? Hasselhoff endures this with all first-try contestants that can’t separate themselves from the pack.

Upon initial scouring of the Internet I couldn’t find a website for Relevent, but I was able to find a single clip of the title track from "Display Your Prey" on YouTube.  I wasn’t left with a very positive impression. However, listening to Relevent’s “Display Your Prey” I began to realize that the band does indeed have talent. But I also realized they’ve got no chance to truly make it in the music business. I’m not being critical – I’m just accepting the reality that there are only so many musical acts that are going to capture the public’s fancy – especially within any given style. However, given the ongoing and evolving deconstruction of the music business model it would be safe to say Relevent might be successful on entirely different terms: their own.

Relevent combines a percussion-heavy Slipknot styled attack along with vocals ranging from black metal screams to death metal growls to modern rocks gruffness. “Display Your Prey” is competently performed, balancing rage and controlled aggression in equal doses. However, I hear too much borrowing and not enough originality on “Display Your Prey.” The talent is there – I think it’s up to the band to discover how to use their talent in a way that is creative and unique. Whether they do it or not is anybody’s guess.

A song not available on “Display Your Prey” is available for listening on the band’s MySpace page.

“Display Your Prey” was produced by Relevent. For an independent release the sound is great.

Relevent: Angel on lead vocals, Sever on lead and rhythm guitars, Venom on lead and rhythm guitars, Korpse on bass, Texxx on drums, and Skitzo on percussion.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.


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Copyright © 2007 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
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