Review by Vinny for Knife - Knife (2021)
In opening this review, I would like to point out from the start that Knife and their self-titled debut release are a fucking ridiculous concept. Like Midnight on crack these German speed metallers have taken on their persona and stretched it to the max, naming their album after themselves, adding in a title track of the same name and then substituting the letter “I” in their band logo for (yep, you guessed it), a knife.
In a world where knife crime continues to make the headlines it is a bold move to say the least. The fact is though that these guys are so tongue-in-cheek, I cannot help but laugh at the lengths they have taken the identity to and the depth of the sheer immersive experience they take the listener on. If for no other reason than pure entertainment, I would recommend all readers of this review just to listen to this record once before getting on with the rest of their lives.
Whilst I doubt the longevity of this record - putting the overkill of a concept aside for a minute – I cannot deny what an important release for speed metal n 2021 this is. It is like Sodom and Motorhead had a baby and let Angelwitch raise it. Perhaps the most unapologetic album of the year, Knife clearly have no fucks to give. The unhinged vocals of the vocalist sound all the more deranged with a German accent applied, making tracks like I Am The Priest twice as fun you may think at first glance. We are never far away from a catchy and anthemic chorus (in fact, virtually every track has this) and this is where the heavy metal influences really do start to shine alongside the speed metal aesthetic. The lead work harks to more of a traditional metal style as veers away from wild sonics to follow a more melodic path.
Despite being one of the more fun releases of the year, Knife suffer from a mentality that more is good. More speed, more anthems, more nostalgic heavy metal references, gruffer and scowling vocals galore that do grate towards the end of the album, all these moving parts do sadly result in some stasis on the record. That having been said, the album is not supposed to be some progressive masterpiece and does have an infectious punk attitude to its delivery that cannot fail to please.