I love cheese. Think of all the wonderful things that wouldn’t exist without it. Pizza, cheeseburgers, nachos, quesadillas, 2003 Al Roker. Cheese is one of those things that, with rare exception, there can never be enough of. Our mission here at AMG is to be thorough and fair, so we listen to an album at minimum of a good three or six times. Since Instigator‘s Bad Future EP is so short you can probably triple that and since it’s cheesy as a Chicago deep dish, at this point with all the dairy I’ve ingested I am approaching Kirstie Alley levels of gravitational pull. As Instigator are Italian and the band includes members of other notable acts like Blasphemy-disciples Antichrist, Devil Lee Rot and Autopsy Torment, I hoped for high quality Parmigiano-Reggiano, but unfortunately this is more Cheez Wiz than Buffalo Mozzarella. Definitely not one for the lactose intolerant.
You can say things starts off on a high note, but just in the literal as opposed to figurative sense. Vocalist Hiroshima firmly plants his flag in the opening track “Anabolic” with a falsetto that sounds like King Diamond with a bad sinus infection and likewise the high pitched squeals during the verses of “Inseminoid” make me wish I was being waterboarded so I wouldn’t have to hear them. From there, he’s all over the place like Stevie Wonder at the Indy 500, going from a witchy rasp that’s more comical than menacing to clean, almost operatic bellowing in “Black Magic” that’s as melodramatic as an episode of Dawson’s Creek.
The band is fine. The bass is clear and audible throughout, and the epically-named bassist Persecutioner takes brief runs from the guitar line. Transgressor’s drum performance is workmanlike if uninspired, unfortunately like most of the riffs herein. The occasional solo stands out but beyond that, not much else. Bad Future walks the tightrope between punk, thrash, black metal and traditional heavy metal and, unfortunately, plummets to a gnarly death. Each track kicks off with a sound bit from a horror or sci fi flick, like Dracula A.D. and Nemesis, and punches home what is already abundantly clear – this is supposed to be the audio equivalent of a B movie, but in this case, it made for an F listening experience. Bad special effects and acting equate to lame riffs and bland performances without any of the laughs that come along with watching a movie like R.O.T.O.R. or a Troma flick, or genuine chilling moments of a Hammer film like Horror Of Dracula. In the case of a band such as Midnight that walks a similar path, there is some actual menace, whereas Instigator comes off as a goof with tongue clearly planted in cheek, but someone got confused and planted it in the wrong kind of cheek because this shit stinks.
Like your tongue seeking out a sore in your mouth or using a broken toe as a furniture detector, I almost started to enjoy the torture of listening to Bad Future countless times. Almost. Now as I type these final words, I am relieved that I can shed this albatross like a vestigial limb.
DR: 8 | Format Reviewed: 256 kbps mp3
Label: Gates of Hell Records
Websites: Too KVLT for the web
Releases Worldwide: December 11th, 2015