Arsenic Addiction – An Undertaker’s Lament (2010)


With their 2009 release of “Requiem of the Fallen”, the band made a powerful statement that they are a force to be reckoned by combining powerful vocals, crushing guitars, and precise drumming with an equally interesting and interactive Victorian-themed live show. “An Undertaker’s Lament” is the bands latest release where they try to push things one step closer to national (and why not international) recognition.

Starting with the atmospheric piece “Invocation”, Arsenic Addiction immediately shows considerable improvement when it comes to writing songs and creating catchy melodies within the first two songs in the album (“Lady Death” is the second one). Led by Lady Arsenic’s contrasting clean and growling vocals, the band has grown musically into crafting better songs that showcase her vocal abilities.

During the eight songs presented in this release, we get very powerful tracks that feature crushing (and catchy) guitar riffs, a powerful bass guitar line, and very tight drumming. The use of keyboards is very well spread out to enhance songs like “The Black Lullaby”, and the band never abuses them allowing Arsenic Addiction to sound brutal and melodic when needed.

There are also male growls in songs like “The Black Lullaby” and “Valor” that work very well as a ‘beauty and the beast’ approach with Lady A’s clean vocals. Like we said in the past, there are countless bands that have female growlers, but Arsenic Addiction is one of the best ones we have heard in the current Metal scene in the USA. The epic moments at the end of songs like “Valor”, show the abilities of the band to quickly change from a full on aggression to the more melodic side of the band’s sound.

In songs like “Scream of the Banshee” we can also see the band shaking things up and sounding a bit different that what we usually hear from them, but being equally effective with catchy chorus sections and throat-ripping screams. The production of this self-released album is pretty good by today’s self-releases standards, and makes us wonder how epic would they sound with a bigger production behind them.

As with most things in life, there are some negative things that can be said about this release as well. Most importantly, we have that most of the songs sound very alike, and this might put off some people. We think that if the band incorporated more elements into their music and integrated some of their ‘live theatrics’ to the recorded music (probably some spoke sections or movie samples); it would greatly benefit their overall sound.

In overall, we have a very solid improvement over the band’s latest release “Requiem of the Fallen”. The band is writing better songs that have very memorable moments (like “Benediction), but they are still missing a few things here and there to make their sound really standout from the crow. We can only expect better things from this band in the future, so we better stayed tuned and watch this band only get better with time.

Band: Arsenic Addiction Album: An Undertaker’s Lament
Label: Self-Released

Release: September 2010

Official Site myspace
Genre: Metal

Country: USA

Rating: 87/100

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