Gloom review by Job for a Cowboy

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  • Released: Jun 7, 2011
  • Sound: 7
  • Lyrics: 8
  • Overall Impression: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 7.3 Good
  • Users' score: 7.3 (20 votes)
Job for a Cowboy: Gloom
7

Sound — 7
Back in 2005, somebody thought it would be a good idea to put a metal song over a few Spongebob Squarepants clips and post it to YouTube. And thus, Job For A Cowboy was propelled into international fame. Their debut "Doom" EP became a staple in the deathcore community (some would argue that JFAC helped shaped deathcore into what it is today), and countless clone bands popped up all over the internet, even stealing the same scratchy-logo font for their own band logos. All of them emulated, but failed to recreate, what Job For A Cowboy had achieved. While the cookie cutter bands were busy writing breakdowns and pig squeals, Job For A Cowboy had already started moving on. With lineup changes came stylistic changes, and the band quickly became about reinventing themselves more than reinventing the proverbial wheel of deathcore. Over the years they've been drifting further away from the cliched scene they've played such a vital hand in and have been constantly demolishing and rebuilding their sound towards a more legitimate attempt at death metal. Gloom is the result of years worth of trials, errors, and experimentation. "Gloom" builds upon that pseudo-tech death sound that was so prominent on "Ruination", but in a different way. Now, I'll be honest with you. "Ruination" bored me for the most part, aside from "Regurgitated Disinformation", which is probably the best song in their catalog (in my opinion). While there isn't an equally awesome track on this EP, the four tracks on Gloom are consistently better than all of "Ruination" and "Genesis" combined. Fans of "Doom", however, may have a tough time swallowing the pill that is the new JFAC.

Job For A Cowboy are becoming increasingly technical with the music they write. On "Misery Reformatory", there's enough start/stop action in the riffs to give any headbanger a good case of whiplash, or at least, a very sore neck. The solos on this EP shred quicker than ever before, reaching dizzying speeds ("Plastic Idols" being a perfect example). As for the ever-so-infamous breakdowns, there aren't nearly as many as you'd expect from the fathers of modern deathcore. During the last half of "Execution Parade", there was an epic lead-in that any other band would have used as a transition into a breakdown. If I was a mosh hero, it would have been time for a bedroom throwdown. But I'm not a mosh hero, bedroom throwdowns are lame, and there was no breakdown. Comparing "Doom" and "Gloom", the latter is miles ahead in terms of technicality and creativity. Unfortunately, the same can't really be said for originality. Back in 2005, "Doom" was hard to describe, because at the time, there wasn't much in the way of similar bands out there to compare it to. For better or worse, that's changed. When I heard the first track on the EP, I thought I was listening to some odd new track from The Black Dahlia Murder. That's essentially what new Job For A Cowboy sounds like; "Ruination" with a big helping of Black Dahlia thrown in. The fact that Jason Suecof (the man who produced TBDM's "Nocturnal") handled production duties on "Gloom" does nothing to remedy this, but I'll give him credit, it sounds great. The rhythm section really shines through, even the bass (which is sometimes mixed so unjustly low in metal music).

Lyrics — 8
As much as Job For A Cowboy's older material failed to hold my attention, I have always been consistently impressed with Jonny Davy's vocal delivery. The man sounds like a behemoth, and his voice has always been a selling point for this band. Davy outshines his peers in most cases; his lows are menacing and his highs cut through your eardrums like a chainsaw. Regardless of what Jonny Davy sounds like, it's not his voice but his actual delivery which always astounds me. When he's not drawing out his growls in long demonic howls, he's spitting verses at machine gun speeds. The fact that he is able to growl at those speeds and still be able to keep words from slurring together never fails to amaze me. You can say that you don't like him, sure, but you can't say he doesn't have skill. It's just a shame that you can't understand a word coming out of his mouth.

Overall Impression — 7
I've always been a big TBDM fan, so can't say that Job For A Cowboy sounding a bit like them is entirely bad. Of course, people will inevitably disagree on both them sounding like Black Dahlia and this not being a bad thing. It can be a bit tedious to feel like you've heard something before, though. Especially when it's one formerly notoriously influential band beginning to sound like another notoriously influential band. At the end of the day, this EP has its ups and downs. There are moments where you can really see how much Job For A Cowboy have matured and learned since they began wreaking havoc in the metal world, but there are also moments where you can tell that they still need to put the final pieces of the map together to figure out where they're trying to go. And even though the band's musicianship has improved, some of the songs still end up losing my attention. "Execution Parade" and "Plastic Idols" are ultimately forgettable. That takes out half of the tracks, making the EP itself half forgettable.

Nonetheless, I am comfortable saying that the other two songs are fairly solid, and I actually do enjoy them. It's safe to say that JFAC have completely washed their hands clean of who they used to be and are definitely taking steps in the right direction. Now all they have to do is be a little more consistent in their songwriting. The old JFAC sound is dead now, the transformation from a deathcore band to a death metal band is without a doubt complete. Fitting that their rebirth is marked with an EP the same way their entry into the metal world was. If "Signature Of Starving Power" is anything to go by, I may end up giving the next JFAC album a proper listen.

40 comments sorted by best / new / date

    EpiExplorer
    They were crap, now they're average, not sure which is worse. Pretty good live show though. Not as disappointing as Morbid Angels new album, has to be said. I dont know what happened to them, I really dont..
    romencer17
    Shit shit and shit again. For those looking for good death metal from this year, check out new full-lengths from Autopsy, Blaspherian, Putridity, and Miasmal!
    Metalxorxdie
    they do sound very much like TBDM on this EP...and I never cared for that band either....if anything Ruination was their best and Genesis was decent imo....Doom was just a scenecore publicity stunt to get big...yes I said it
    huevos
    EpiExplorer wrote: Ibeanez wrote: They were crap, now they're average, not sure which is worse. Um...need help? Continued success in todays music industry depends on evolution. If a band becomes average, thats saying they're boring, nobody will be interested. If they were still bad, they might be more relevant, but then they'd be bad which they've been since day one, so it would make their badness sound like average. The only way for them to be good is to move forward , which they're doing at a very slooooow pace.
    I guess you didn't get the memo that retro is in. You would have a good argument (aside from the circular logic of bad=relevant/average=boring, bad), if you defined "continued successes". They have a solid fan base (with increasing sales after the change in sound), with a neutral stance on illegal downloading (giving the impression that money isn't a primary issue). In terms of commercial and creative success, they seem to be on the rise. I fail to see the problem with JFAC's "average-ness". Ulcerate is some good shitz, but just as fans of "proper death metal" would hate on JFAC, they have a tendency to dislike post-rock infused death-metal. Not that they won't like either/or, but it's not likely.
    SkepsisMetal
    [quote]Iommianity wrote: Ulcerate putssuper collasal wrote: jfac is still one of the few good death metal bands there is today, most of them have pussied up a bit and the rest are just copy cats What death metal do you listen to? The picture you paint mitt have something to do with your own taste. Most people that dislike JFAC (for legit reasons, not genre tags) do so because they're not bringing anything new to to the table, in terms of brutally or anything in else. If you want a different death metal release in 2011, check out the new Ulcerate album.[/quote Since when was that a legitimate reason to actively dislike a band? Because they aren't bringing you something new? Because they aren't catering to the exact thoughts in your head? Because you're too damn lazy and ignorant to just see music for what it is? Fuck up and get on with your life.
    JWD32792
    I don't know, they're still just really boring to me. I just finished the EP and nothing really stood out.
    C O B H C
    SkepsisMetal wrote: [quote]Iommianity wrote: Ulcerate putssuper collasal wrote: jfac is still one of the few good death metal bands there is today, most of them have pussied up a bit and the rest are just copy cats What death metal do you listen to? The picture you paint mitt have something to do with your own taste. Most people that dislike JFAC (for legit reasons, not genre tags) do so because they're not bringing anything new to to the table, in terms of brutally or anything in else. If you want a different death metal release in 2011, check out the new Ulcerate album.[/quote Since when was that a legitimate reason to actively dislike a band? Because they aren't bringing you something new? Because they aren't catering to the exact thoughts in your head? Because you're too damn lazy and ignorant to just see music for what it is? Fuck up and get on with your life.
    Some people don't like to listen to boring, rehashed DM groups like JFAC. Why are you so mad? Also Ulcerate is amazing. Fuck yeah.
    ESPRyuu16
    I myself liked the EP it was definitely a step in how they controlled the technicality (to me they sort of simplified it). Ruination was just too much tech! I like the album but you get lost in it because of the playing.
    Iommianity
    SkepsisMetal wrote: [quote]Iommianity wrote: Ulcerate putssuper collasal wrote: jfac is still one of the few good death metal bands there is today, most of them have pussied up a bit and the rest are just copy cats What death metal do you listen to? The picture you paint mitt have something to do with your own taste. Most people that dislike JFAC (for legit reasons, not genre tags) do so because they're not bringing anything new to to the table, in terms of brutally or anything in else. If you want a different death metal release in 2011, check out the new Ulcerate album.[/quote Since when was that a legitimate reason to actively dislike a band? Because they aren't bringing you something new? Because they aren't catering to the exact thoughts in your head? Because you're too damn lazy and ignorant to just see music for what it is? Fuck up and get on with your life.
    lol, struck a nerve? You probably shouldn't post in threads regarding bands you get so defensive over. I dunno what world you live in, but yeah, I'm going to judge a band based on my own preferences. It's a radical concept, I know. Dunno how I'm being ignorant, let alone 'lazy', but between the two of us, I'd say you need to move on with your life. I was giving my opinion, you're ranting about...something.
    Amuro Jay
    Zycho wrote: jetfuel495 wrote: flyboyC17 wrote: "and countless clone bands popped up all over the internet, even stealing the same scratchy-logo font for their own band logos" um JFAC wasn't the first band to use the scratchy can't tell what it says logo Obviously they weren't, I think the point was that other clone bands stole the same exact font. What do you mean obviously they weren't? It's straight up a fact that they were not even remotely close to being the first band to use that style of font. Example: The Black Dahlia Murder
    Do you have difficulty with reading comprehension? I said "same exact font". You seriously never saw the loads of bands that took the same exact letters from JFAC's logo? That would explain why you're not getting the point.
    SkepsisMetal
    Iommianity wrote: SkepsisMetal wrote: [quote]Iommianity wrote: Ulcerate putssuper collasal wrote: jfac is still one of the few good death metal bands there is today, most of them have pussied up a bit and the rest are just copy cats What death metal do you listen to? The picture you paint mitt have something to do with your own taste. Most people that dislike JFAC (for legit reasons, not genre tags) do so because they're not bringing anything new to to the table, in terms of brutally or anything in else. If you want a different death metal release in 2011, check out the new Ulcerate album.[/quote Since when was that a legitimate reason to actively dislike a band? Because they aren't bringing you something new? Because they aren't catering to the exact thoughts in your head? Because you're too damn lazy and ignorant to just see music for what it is? Fuck up and get on with your life. lol, struck a nerve? You probably shouldn't post in threads regarding bands you get so defensive over. I dunno what world you live in, but yeah, I'm going to judge a band based on my own preferences. It's a radical concept, I know. Dunno how I'm being ignorant, let alone 'lazy', but between the two of us, I'd say you need to move on with your life. I was giving my opinion, you're ranting about...something.
    I'm far from defensive over JFAC. I've only heard a couple of tracks off Ruination, and was interested what the new album had to offer. Your overall opinion toward music is what pisses me off. Unless something is aiming at avant garde these days, it just won't be original. End of story. It's just a ridiculous reason to actively hate on a band because they like a genre enough to play it without having to re hash it and re hash it.
    Iommianity
    SkepsisMetal wrote: Iommianity wrote: SkepsisMetal wrote: [quote]Iommianity wrote: Ulcerate putssuper collasal wrote: jfac is still one of the few good death metal bands there is today, most of them have pussied up a bit and the rest are just copy cats What death metal do you listen to? The picture you paint mitt have something to do with your own taste. Most people that dislike JFAC (for legit reasons, not genre tags) do so because they're not bringing anything new to to the table, in terms of brutally or anything in else. If you want a different death metal release in 2011, check out the new Ulcerate album.[/quote Since when was that a legitimate reason to actively dislike a band? Because they aren't bringing you something new? Because they aren't catering to the exact thoughts in your head? Because you're too damn lazy and ignorant to just see music for what it is? Fuck up and get on with your life. lol, struck a nerve? You probably shouldn't post in threads regarding bands you get so defensive over. I dunno what world you live in, but yeah, I'm going to judge a band based on my own preferences. It's a radical concept, I know. Dunno how I'm being ignorant, let alone 'lazy', but between the two of us, I'd say you need to move on with your life. I was giving my opinion, you're ranting about...something. I'm far from defensive over JFAC. I've only heard a couple of tracks off Ruination, and was interested what the new album had to offer. Your overall opinion toward music is what pisses me off. Unless something is aiming at avant garde these days, it just won't be original. End of story. It's just a ridiculous reason to actively hate on a band because they like a genre enough to play it without having to re hash it and re hash it.
    I had no idea I gave you my overall opinion about music, let alone death metal. You're bitching about things I didn't actually say. You're all over the place too. So what, I only like avant garde music, yet hate Job For A Cowboy because they don't rehash death metal? How does that even make sense?
    Iommianity
    Plus, I said I dislike them. How is that actively hating them? I further said that hating them because of a genre tag is stupid. You can say you're not being defensive, but your terrible logic and arguments say otherwise.
    ninjagayden777
    This band is officialy dead to me. Started as something original, now they're just another ****ing Black Dahlia Murder ripoff.
    Thrasher11
    literally have no original members except the singer.... they should change the damn name already
    JonnyMonster91
    Why do you Death Metal kids have to argue about every single thing and compare one band to another band or old band to new band? Every single time. It's the exact same stuff. Listen to the music and shut up. Sheesh.
    zerodeck
    Saw them live as a headliner for Whitechapel, half the crowd left the building because they were just so bad in comparison to Whitechapel. Their drummer made more mistakes then I could count, their music sounded bland and their singer is one of the worst frontmen of a succesful band I've ever seen.
    EpiExplorer
    Ibeanez wrote: They were crap, now they're average, not sure which is worse. Um...need help?
    Continued success in todays music industry depends on evolution. If a band becomes average, thats saying they're boring, nobody will be interested. If they were still bad, they might be more relevant, but then they'd be bad which they've been since day one, so it would make their badness sound like average. The only way for them to be good is to move forward, which they're doing at a very slooooow pace.
    romencer17
    Listened to the EP two times in my brother's car before he told me that it wasn't TBDM. Don't really know what's more pointless and boring, JFAC making their own boring death metal or copying TBDM's?
    Meelad360
    Good review. However, I was hoping this would be a return to the "Doom" days, for nostalgia purposes
    larrytheguitar
    EpiExplorer wrote: They were crap, now they're average, not sure which is worse. Pretty good live show though. Not as disappointing as Morbid Angels new album, has to be said. I dont know what happened to them, I really dont..
    Morbid Angel is dead. And yeah, this EP isn't mindblowing, but I still think it's some good solid metal to rock out to. So congrats JFAC.
    Lion_Slicer
    I was moderately intrigued until you threw the the Black Dahlia Murder reference. They have a new album coming out within two weeks so I'll just wait for that and maybe give Ruination a few more spins.
    krvolok
    EpiExplorer wrote: They were crap, now they're average, not sure which is worse. Pretty good live show though.
    This is actually fully listenable,that alone makes it the best release from JFAC.
    super collasal
    jfac is still one of the few good death metal bands there is today, most of them have pussied up a bit and the rest are just copy cats
    saizon8377
    EpiExplorer wrote: They were crap, now they're average, not sure which is worse. Pretty good live show though. Not as disappointing as Morbid Angels new album, has to be said. I dont know what happened to them, I really dont..
    good point there miss the old stuff
    Panasonic3
    Solid review. Best reviewer of the year award to you sir. I am a fan of this band have been since the Squarepants videos. I can thank this band for getting me into Between the Buried and Me . JFAC has their ups and downs for sure, but I'll never stop supporting them. Davy is a beast. I'm getting this EP.
    Iommianity
    Ulcerate puts
    super collasal wrote: jfac is still one of the few good death metal bands there is today, most of them have pussied up a bit and the rest are just copy cats
    What death metal do you listen to? The picture you paint mitt have something to do with your own taste. Most people that dislike JFAC (for legit reasons, not genre tags) do so because they're not bringing anything new to to the table, in terms of brutally or anything in else. If you want a different death metal release in 2011, check out the new Ulcerate album.
    flyboyC17
    "and countless clone bands popped up all over the internet, even stealing the same scratchy-logo font for their own band logos" um JFAC wasn't the first band to use the scratchy can't tell what it says logo
    ProgJazzMath
    Pointless fact about the scratchy font. Seriously. Bands have doing that for decades! I will say though, earlier bands who did like decrepit birth had a significant style with it while tons and tons of bands basicaly copied the same font. Some bands have distinguishable titles as some do not, but i think if you are a serious band, you should at least make your band name legible! As Cephalic Carnage said about themselves, "We have the most legible band logo in all of death metal."
    Ibeanez
    They were crap, now they're average, not sure which is worse.
    Um...need help?
    robertito696
    flyboyC17 wrote: "and countless clone bands popped up all over the internet, even stealing the same scratchy-logo font for their own band logos" um JFAC wasn't the first band to use the scratchy can't tell what it says logo
    And by Death/Black Metal standards it's very legible.
    Amuro Jay
    flyboyC17 wrote: "and countless clone bands popped up all over the internet, even stealing the same scratchy-logo font for their own band logos" um JFAC wasn't the first band to use the scratchy can't tell what it says logo
    Obviously they weren't, I think the point was that other clone bands stole the same exact font.
    Zycho
    jetfuel495 wrote: flyboyC17 wrote: "and countless clone bands popped up all over the internet, even stealing the same scratchy-logo font for their own band logos" um JFAC wasn't the first band to use the scratchy can't tell what it says logo Obviously they weren't, I think the point was that other clone bands stole the same exact font.
    What do you mean obviously they weren't? It's straight up a fact that they were not even remotely close to being the first band to use that style of font. Example: The Black Dahlia Murder
    jrmeh41
    "Fans of "Doom", however, may have a tough time swallowing the pill that is the new JFAC."
    yeah totally
    blake1221
    Zycho wrote: jetfuel495 wrote: flyboyC17 wrote: "and countless clone bands popped up all over the internet, even stealing the same scratchy-logo font for their own band logos" um JFAC wasn't the first band to use the scratchy can't tell what it says logo Obviously they weren't, I think the point was that other clone bands stole the same exact font. What do you mean obviously they weren't? It's straight up a fact that they were not even remotely close to being the first band to use that style of font. Example: The Black Dahlia Murder
    Stop nitpicking. He was just making a point that they were one of the ones who popularized it and the deathcore genre. If you're arguing about originality in the Myspace Epoch, you're fighting a losing battle.
    Loki_37
    Ruination wasn't deathcore but it was still god-awful. I cannot forgive anyone who recommended me that. Maybe I'll see their next album, maybe.
    Derioyn
    This (Ep) was still far less disappointing the new suicide silence (full) album I went from a fan of both bands to just a JFAC fan!!