View Full Version : M.X. album reviews 2: Himsa: "Summon in Thunder"

06-27-2008, 12:15 PM
Goin' Out With a Bang...


Those in the metal world have probably heard the regrettable news: Himsa is calling it quits, they're done, broken up... so at this point, the question becomes: did they go out with a bang? Or did they just leave a bad taste in our mouths?

Himsa's final assault on our ears appears in the form of "Summon in Thunder", a ferocious, unrelenting piece of aural hell that we're ironically happy to weather. Himsa pioneered this brutal form of thrash metal in the ninties when they exploded out of Seattle, and they're style has been continuously evolving yet still giving fans what they want, all leading up to this. With their very name being a mutation on a sanskrit word meaning "peace and harmony", they're name means effectively: violence and evil, and their cd shows it, and then some.

One gripe I do have, however, is the fact that I personally wish they had chosen a better first song. Reinventing the Noose isn't that stellar, the melody's annoying and although it is technically okay, it is not that good a song overall, the guitars are just too "slimy" sounding... it doesn't make the best impression for the rest of the cd.
Fortunately, Haunter is ready to melt your face off right after. The guitars are really well played, and the singer, John Pettibone, is at his saint-bashing best. The bass is nice and earth-shaking, and it works well with the drums.
Next up is arguably the best song on the album, and , as some put it, Himsa's best song ever: Big Timber. It opens with a brutal guitar riff reminiscent of metal giants like In Flames, and once you read the lyrics, you'll find out the song's really hilarious, toungue-in-cheek. The song is unusual for Himsa and metal in general, as it actually incorporates a verse-chorus structure, a song layout more often seen in emo bands like 30 Seconds to Mars. the chorus, speaking of it, is the best part, the wah-wah petal the guitars use is different, while still being hard and, well, Himsa.
The strong songs continue, with Given in to the Taking. The organ effect used by the guitars are prevalent here, and Pettibone is still strong and shows no signs of slowing down. It's just an altogether good, enjoyable song, no other way to put it. The lyrics are Himsa's trademark chuckle-head metal, and the bass and drums continue to work together to create an unstoppable, solid wall of sound you could push against.
The next track is the closest thing to a "slow song" on the cd, Skinwalkers. It opens with haunting duel acoustic guitars, nut speeds up to add electric to the mix. The vocals don't actually start until later, and the bass is kinda inaudible in this one for some reason. The drums, on the other hand, control the song, the beat on the toms sounds really primal, a nice unique sound, and another solid song. You either love it or hate it. Then comes my personal favorite song, Curseworship. The guitars actually sound kinds, punk-ish on this one, and they're really fast, which I like. The drums change up from their usual heavy beats to quick bass bursts, and the vocals are once again spot-on.
The problems arise near the end of the album. The songs Hooks as Hands and Ruin Them both melt together for me, and they're pretty generic. Not bad, just boring. It pucks up one more time at Den of Imfamy, which is a really hard, really rough sounding song, and the song it proceeds, Unleash Carnage, is just as brutal, but once again, they sound similar, and you will have trouble remembering them individually after a while. The final song, Himsa's final song period, is Summon in Thunder, and well, it's disappointing. I can't pinpoint it, all the instrumentalists play well as ever and the vocals aren't bad, it just...isn't that good a song. Kinda sad really.

The guitars, in case you haven't noticed, are awesome. They use a very few effects, but they don't really need them. The bass is solid, not really outstanding, and the drums power the album really well, just once again not standing out that much except in Skinwalkers. Vocal wise, this is a good record if you like Pettibone's harsh half-growl.

Luckily, the middle of the Cd makes up for Himsa's lackluster first song, and the cd's dismal final few songs, this is a good cd, problem is it's all stuck in the middle, like a fat man in quicksand. He may be a good guy, he's just being drowned in liquid dirt.

More reviews coming soon; next up, M.X. risks insanity by reviewing.....an emo album...see which one coming soon.

07-09-2008, 08:27 PM
I think this CD was good, not final album material but hey.
Ironically I didn't really like "Summon in Thunder" alot, I prefer the other songs, especially "Big Timber".