Review by Vinny for Nevermore - The Politics of Ecstasy (1996)
I am not a fan of Nevermore. There's a positive and non-judgemental start to a review if ever I saw one. I find them to be reminiscent of high school metalheads the majority of whom liked thrash metal and one who wanted to be in a power metal band. Warrel Dane's fantastic vocal ability was an abrasive clash too far me, it just did not fit alongside the equally superb guitar work of Loomis. As good as they both were in their own way, they should never have been in a band together.
What The Politics of Ecstasy lacks in coherence it makes up for in effort. There's nothing forced here, the performances are juxtaposed to me yes, but at the same time they are of a sufficiently high standard to entertain me as they espouse quality musicianship delivered with obvious passion. Unfortunately there's just no me getting over the opposing styles. This is one of the most frustrating metal albums I have perhaps ever had to review.
There's lots of Pantera like lead work here and very similar rhythms also, with this prevalent to the point of me being constantly reminded of Cowboys from Hell throughout the record. I suppose we could argue that the vocals are what really set the sound apart from Anselmo and company, but again it is just too harsh a contrast even for that sake. Even in the album's more enjoyable moments there's still a cringey moment lurking around the corner somewhere to jump out and make me pull a distasteful face as some vocal passage seems to be completely out of sync with the rest of the arrangement.
Overall, this album just doesn't work for me even with the many offerings of rope it throws me, i just can't get on with it.