Charlatans Inc. Industrial Metal Derision Cult The Derision Cult is a one-man industrial metal project primarily influenced by thrash metal. While the opening paragraph is normally where I'd do a full-fledged introduction to the band, I'm going to instead redirect you to this interview we recently conducted with founder Dave McAnally. "Charlatans Inc.", then, is the fifteenth release and ninth album from The Derision Cult. While my knowledge of the project's past work is limited (I hadn't had the time but to skim through a couple of older releases), in recent years The Derision Cult has slowed down their release schedule. Rather than pumping out release-after release, McAnally is giving it his all to promote and focus on one release at a time. Thus the beginning of "Charlatans Inc." begins with 'The Great Reset'. This five minute track opens with a bit of static and some samples from what sounds like a news broadcast. I am then slammed into The Derision Cult's signature sound of electronic-backed quick guitar riffs and percussive effort. McAnally also gives us his primary vocal output on the album; kind of reminding me of Lemmy from Motörhead, there's an all around gruffness to McAnally's vocals that borders on the edge of coherent growling. What I do not like about this song, however, is its length and lack of content. 'The Great Reset' sounds as if it loops one too many times through the same blast beats and riffs; on successive playthroughs of the album 'The Great Reset' grew boring.Charlatans Inc. by The Derision CultThis repetitive structure, thankfully, does not rear its ugly head for the rest of the album. Taking a look at 'Call a Man God', which comes right after 'The Great Reset', for example. Throughout the song I receive slightly distorted vocals, various samples sprinkled in beside instrumentals, and a pretty neat guitar solo around the two-minute and fifty-second mark. That is a song that is written properly with enough of a personality to keep me engaged for the four-minute and sixteen second span that it lasts. Looking further into the album, 'Charlatans' manages to thrash (no pun intended) through a myriad of destructive samples, bass-driven segments of world-building, and much more. One of the more interesting songs on the album comes in around the midway point, 'This is Control'. Perhaps this is my electronic side speaking out, but it was a welcome track that drove off the beaten path. "Charlatans Inc." also comes with a couple of other problems that need to be addressed, the first of which starts with sound quality. Often times the sound mix and master can be ugly. I am unsure if the album was self-produced, but I feel as if having professional sound engineers and masters pick through the album with a fine-tooth comb would have allowed "Charlatans Inc." to avoid the muddiness I picked up throughout it's runtime. I also feel as if McAnally limited his sound palette on "Charlatans Inc." I was often waiting for something else to come on rather than just another thrash / industrial metal ballad. That is why I swooned so hard over 'This is Control'; it's ultimately different than the rest of the album. Showing off that you can do something different but only commit to that on one song on the album is quite annoying. Despite those complaints, however, I find my time with "Charlatans Inc." to be one that can be more enjoyed than not. I'm not a fan of 'The Great Reset' and it has become a song that I simply do not with to revisit anymore. However, the rest of the album, despite some muddiness and similar sounding thrash metal bits, deserves a decent listen. If The Derision Cult is on a path to slow down releases and focus on songwriting, then I would recommend opening up to different sounds and unique ideas a la 'This is Control'. The industrial field is filled with wonderful experimental sounds just waiting to be harnessed on the next, great industrial metal album, and The Derision Cult might just be the one to do it. As it stands, however, I give "Charlatans Inc." a good 6.5 out of 10! This review was commissioned through our Ko-fi page. 350
Brutal Resonance

Derision Cult - Charlatans Inc.

6.5
"Alright"
Released off label 2021
The Derision Cult is a one-man industrial metal project primarily influenced by thrash metal. While the opening paragraph is normally where I'd do a full-fledged introduction to the band, I'm going to instead redirect you to this interview we recently conducted with founder Dave McAnally. "Charlatans Inc.", then, is the fifteenth release and ninth album from The Derision Cult. While my knowledge of the project's past work is limited (I hadn't had the time but to skim through a couple of older releases), in recent years The Derision Cult has slowed down their release schedule. Rather than pumping out release-after release, McAnally is giving it his all to promote and focus on one release at a time. 

Thus the beginning of "Charlatans Inc." begins with 'The Great Reset'. This five minute track opens with a bit of static and some samples from what sounds like a news broadcast. I am then slammed into The Derision Cult's signature sound of electronic-backed quick guitar riffs and percussive effort. McAnally also gives us his primary vocal output on the album; kind of reminding me of Lemmy from Motörhead, there's an all around gruffness to McAnally's vocals that borders on the edge of coherent growling. What I do not like about this song, however, is its length and lack of content. 'The Great Reset' sounds as if it loops one too many times through the same blast beats and riffs; on successive playthroughs of the album 'The Great Reset' grew boring.



This repetitive structure, thankfully, does not rear its ugly head for the rest of the album. Taking a look at 'Call a Man God', which comes right after 'The Great Reset', for example. Throughout the song I receive slightly distorted vocals, various samples sprinkled in beside instrumentals, and a pretty neat guitar solo around the two-minute and fifty-second mark. That is a song that is written properly with enough of a personality to keep me engaged for the four-minute and sixteen second span that it lasts. Looking further into the album, 'Charlatans' manages to thrash (no pun intended) through a myriad of destructive samples, bass-driven segments of world-building, and much more. One of the more interesting songs on the album comes in around the midway point, 'This is Control'. Perhaps this is my electronic side speaking out, but it was a welcome track that drove off the beaten path. 

"Charlatans Inc." also comes with a couple of other problems that need to be addressed, the first of which starts with sound quality. Often times the sound mix and master can be ugly. I am unsure if the album was self-produced, but I feel as if having professional sound engineers and masters pick through the album with a fine-tooth comb would have allowed "Charlatans Inc." to avoid the muddiness I picked up throughout it's runtime. I also feel as if McAnally limited his sound palette on "Charlatans Inc." I was often waiting for something else to come on rather than just another thrash / industrial metal ballad. That is why I swooned so hard over 'This is Control'; it's ultimately different than the rest of the album. Showing off that you can do something different but only commit to that on one song on the album is quite annoying. 

Despite those complaints, however, I find my time with "Charlatans Inc." to be one that can be more enjoyed than not. I'm not a fan of 'The Great Reset' and it has become a song that I simply do not with to revisit anymore. However, the rest of the album, despite some muddiness and similar sounding thrash metal bits, deserves a decent listen. If The Derision Cult is on a path to slow down releases and focus on songwriting, then I would recommend opening up to different sounds and unique ideas a la 'This is Control'. The industrial field is filled with wonderful experimental sounds just waiting to be harnessed on the next, great industrial metal album, and The Derision Cult might just be the one to do it. As it stands, however, I give "Charlatans Inc." a good 6.5 out of 10! 

This review was commissioned through our Ko-fi page.
Aug 31 2021

Off label

Official release released by the artist themselves without the backing of a label.

Steven Gullotta

info@brutalresonance.com
I've been writing for Brutal Resonance since November of 2012 and now serve as the editor-in-chief. I love the dark electronic underground and usually have too much to listen to at once but I love it. I am also an editor at Aggressive Deprivation, a digital/physical magazine since March of 2016. I support the scene as much as I can from my humble laptop.

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