Chains of Bondage - Perilous Times Have Come


Ok, first off...this is one of the most inconsistent and horribly produced records I've ever heard.  Some of the songs sound like they were recorded on a boom box with a pillow over the mic.  Sometimes they even go to the other room to record and leave the boom box where it was with the pillow still over the mic.  And then at other times, they take the pillow off the mic and the entire band stands on top of the boom box screaming and playing as loud as possible.  It's almost kinda humorous.  One minute my speakers are about to blow and the very next song I can't hear anything unless I crank it to ten.  No one can listen to this without changing the volume level multiply times throughout the CD.
Anyways...on to the music.  The opening song is a cover of Tourniquet's "Test for Leprosy".  The original is a killer song.  Unfortunately, this version is not quite as killer.  It does sound like "Test for Leprosy", but the production is much expected, and the "try to sound like Guy Ritter" vocals fall way short of the mark.  Occasionally, the band will do their more standard growls to throw in a new feel to the song and this works pretty good.  The band does the speed parts of the song good too, while not quite as tight as Tourniquet.  This is actually one of the better produced songs on the album though.
From song two on, the band settles more into their own sound which is chaotic grindcore with sickening vocals.  Some of the songs are your standard ultra short, ultra fast grind songs and others approach the two minute mark.  I actually like the shorter songs better because they are faster and more extreme on the whole.  
One thing that does please me is that the band uses real drums.  It seems like so many bands use drum machines now-a-days that it makes me sick.  Granted, I've heard drum machines that sound better production-wise than these drums, but at least they are real.  Again, sometimes they sound like they are being hit with a sledgehammer, but at other times it sounds like they are just dropping little pebbles on the drums from about six inches up.
The packaging is a very simple one page insert that looks like it was scanned on a computer.  Lyrics are not included, but the ones I could understand sounded very bold for Christ.  I couldn't find the lyrics on their site, but feel free to look for yourself:
My advice to the band...even if it takes three years before your next CD, do it right with the production.  Better to put out a killer sounding record once every three or four years then to put out one that is torture on the ears every twelve months or so.  If three years isn't enough, make it longer.  Some of these songs wouldn't sound half bad...if I could hear them.  I love grindcore, but this album needs a serious production facelift.  (Review by Matt)