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"Identity 6: Behold Another World" (Century Media)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

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"Behold Another World" is the sixth (duh!) of a series of compilation CDs featuring the extremely talented and diverse roster of Century Media artists. "Behold Another World" is Century Media's best compilation yet - this is a satisfying cross-section of the label's talented roster and it is an absolute pleasure to listen to.

Of course, I've already heard most of the music on this compilation already. Bands like Moonspell, Skinlab, Samael, Tiamat, Eyehategod, Dark Tranquillity, Soilwork, Angel Dust, and Sentenced jump right out at the listener. Skinlab are destined for a big audience as "Second Skin" combines the best of modern heaviness with the traditional Bay area sound - the growing popularity of Skinlab is one of the best things to happen in metal in recent memory. "Lustmord," by Portugal's Moonspell, is yet another great achievement in the chameleon-like development of this talented darkwave outfit. Sentenced's "No More Beating As One" is a perfect example of this band's maturity and growth. Dark Tranquillity's "Dobermann" gives this Swedish melodic death metal band a rousing opportunity to attract fans to their gothic-tinged power. The super-production of Samael's "Supra Karma" blends the past and future together into glycerin strains of pandemonium. Although I was disappointed with Tiamat's latest effort, "For Her Pleasure" proves that the band still can claim its rightful place among the atmospheric metal elite. Soilwork, contributing the title track from their sophomore effort "The Chainheart Machine," is one of the up-and-coming metal acts worthy of worldwide success. "Black Rain" by Angel Dust was one of the best surprises of 1999 and their presence on this compilation does everything to justify their standing in the metal community.  Eyehategod's "Story Of The Eye" is Black Sabbath-inspired madness. 

Bands that I'd heard in the past, but not yet heard these particular songs included Mental Home, Stuck Mojo, Jag Panzer, Merauder, Old Man's Child, and Shadows Fall. Stuck Mojo's "Hatebreed" displays their trademark heaviness with greater vocal flexibility. "The First Noble Truth" by Massachusett's metal stalwart-in-waiting is all the evidence needed to prove that the buzz on this band is not a bunch of hot air. Jag Panzer's "King At Price" is a solid contribution from their Macbeth-inspired disc. Mental Home's mastery of darkened gothic black metal is improving with "Eternal Moan" which finds the band dropping their raspy rants for a more pleasing vocal style. Merauder's hardcore-tinged metal shows surprising flair in "Find My Way" as the time off this band took over the last few years hasn't hurt their ferocity. "Obscure Divine Manifestation" is the new path trod by Old Man's Child in a blackened metal scorcher that demonstrates the band's switch to a more darkwave, less thrashy version of their previous black metal style. 

However, it is the newer bands that I was looking forward to hearing for the first time: Krisiun, Winter's Bane, and Arch Enemy. Krisiun's "Soul Devourer" will please all death metal fans with its intensity and purity. Winter's Bane contributes an older song called "Heart Of A Killer" - Winter's Bane features Ripper Owens who now sings for Judas Priest - "Heart Of A Killer" is solid metal that would appeal to all fans of the metal genre. Arch Enemy are yet another band that could be as complete a band as any other on the planet and "Pilgrim" is yet another string in Sweden's effort to dominate metal (In Flames, Amon Amarth, Dark Tranquillity). 

Rounding out the disc is awesome packaging by Travis Smith who has done artwork for Control Denied and Death. 

Eighteen songs from eighteen different (and awesome bands) with a total of 70 minutes of music for only $4! "Identity 6: Behold Another World" is a great way to introduce yourself to some phenomenal bands; expose yourself ... that is, expose yourself to great music. 

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Rating Guide:

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) A classic. This record will kick your ass.

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) So-so. You've heard better.

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

restinks.jpg (954 bytes) Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2000 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 04 Oct 2018 19:54:50 -0400 .