Darkseed - Diving Into Darkness
OK, now these guys are getting painful, completely past and over their best work ('97's Spellcraft), two records into a direction that is cloying and annoying. So this one builds on '99's Give Me Light (or doesn't), offering a badly recorded shotgun marriage of metal guitars and layers of electronica, pooped out the other end as Moonspell (a band getting less desireable with each record) or a Samael with mopey, melodramatic songs, indeed, everything that's bugging you about the new head-hanging Sentenced, except with techno crap heaped on top. But the big problem is not the band's smothering trendiness, but the vocals and lyrics, the vocals doing that gruff but uncommitted Sentenced thing (at least this guy's in tune), and the lyrics sounding all too clearly the work of a non-Anglo. Maybe every mini-me-label's got to have a band like this right now to reign in the goth crowd, but Nuclear Blast's entry should be an exit, Darkseed writing like the second-stringers they are, stabbing and shooting at what is a miserable metal quagmire and coming up covered in delete bin swamp mud.