Scum review by Napalm Death

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  • Released: Jan 1, 1987
  • Sound: 5
  • Lyrics: 7
  • Overall Impression: 6
  • Reviewer's score: 6 Neat
  • Users' score: 8.4 (9 votes)
Napalm Death: Scum
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Sound — 5
I like grindcore, death metal, deathcore, whatever extreme music you call it, and napalm death seems to be called the originator of this genre, and I like them. But for them, this seems to be low effort, low quality material. In their defense, there wasn't really anything like grindcore, and they didn't have much of a budget, but god! Let me just say-that highly distorted buzzing sound that sounds like industrial keyboards-that's bass. Shocking, right? Also, the drums totally overpower everything during one of the "slower" beats, and they use a lot of blast beats which totally overpowers the rest of the music besides vocals which I will get to later, so it sounds like crazy drums with growling vocals and fuzz in the background. Now with a better recording budget or label, the sound on this may be able to be tolerated, but jeez, I like to actually hear the guitar. To add to this, if you haven't known already, there was actually two separate lineups of the band on both halves of the album. The first half is the most tolerable, but the drums are way too loud. On the other half, everything is a little quieter, except for the freaking drums!

Lyrics — 7
As far as the lyrics themselves go, they are very empowering and good. Very political, and stuff you can relate to. Basically genius lyrics. But the vocals themselves are basically just shouts over the drums. Most death metal/grindcore is like this, but this just doesnt't fit, and you can't understand the lyrics without the lyrics sheet either, so what is the point? Even if the lyrics are genious, the songs are really super short anyway (the song "you suffer" has been named the shortest song in history by the guiness book of world records; it's 1.3 seconds long! ), so you can't really fit many vocals in, which adds to the crappiness in the speed of the words. I like their current vocalist way more; he is able to perform songs like these but actually make them a bit more controlled.

Overall Impression — 6
Napalm Death is a good band. I like everything after this album, but not this one, not by a long shot. I just borrowed it from a guy from my church and I gave it back to him the next week because I just couldn't stand it. Scum is a good song just for the intro, but that's about it. One of the best songs is "Multinational Corporations" because the drums are quieter, buts it's not really a song, more of an intro track to the album. If you're gonna buy a napalm death album or want to get into grindcore, I'm sorry, but this isn't the album to start with. Try something by Carcass or some of napalm death's stuff after this. If this was stolen I wouldn't really care, I might even pay somebody to take this from me if I couldn't sell it.

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