…an older one, released about one year ago, yet too interesting to ignore… …yet I’ll keep it short…
Armando ‘Exekutör’ Macedo Filho, the sweet multi-instrumentalist from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - you know, known for its sunny beaches and stunning bitches, sweet cocktails and empty-headed stupidity - returns with his most productive outfit, Flageladör, four years after the last full length, Assalto Da Motosserra. Okay, there were some splits too in the mean-time – yet still it took a long time. With a renewed line-up, consisting of former or current members of e.g. Warsickness, Atomic Roar, Whipstriker and Murdeath, the quartet recorded Predileção Pelo Macabro (meaning ‘predilation by the macabre’), which has a total running time of thirty-five minutes (thirty-three in case of the American edition, for it lacks one song). There are 300 copies on compact disc and 100 ones on cassette, and the material is available in Europe via Helldprod Records and in the New World via Vënënö Sönörö Rëcörds and Hell Music.
And hey, as from the opening introduction, a short yet crafted solo, you smell a taste of ‘tradition’. And indeed, that’s what Flageladör stand for: no-nonsense old-styled Metal for the nostalgic headbanging generation (yes, old folks like me). Nothing more, yet certainly nothing less either.
This is actually a highly melodious form of Speed Metal that did initially conquer our filthy globe more than three decades ago. As said, the whole is extremely melodic in nature, with all tracks based on a fine-tuned lead guitar concept, injected by many trem riffs and several excellently executed solos. It shows the craftsmanship of Armando and his crew.
Great guitar play does not necessarily make a great album. Therefor, one needs a supportive rhythm section, adaptive vocals, a decent sound, and the correct attitude. I come back to all these aspects right here.
The rhythm section indeed is of importance to support the prolific and prominent leading part. Well, it is impressive to notice such fine bass lines and such cool drum patterns. Seriously, the rhythm instrumentation lifts the whole up to a higher level. It sounds as uncompromising as the guitar work. Damn, those drums do really sound as if they had been recorded thirty years ago – the way it must be!
Vocal-wise, Armando’s voice too reminds me of the Eighties’ Speed / Thrash scene. It reminds me of the blurry border in between that era’s Speed, Thrash and Black Metal scenes. It’s raw, little grim and deep-throaty, perfectly fitting to the ‘typifying’ lyrical approach (misanthropy, the sickness called ‘humanity’, our male supremacy (smiley…), tribute to ‘true’ Metal, you know…
A third point was the sound quality. Well, that might be the most striking difference with the scene of old. Of course – hey, we did enter the 21st century – the production is much more in balance. No irritating background sounds, no mistakes whatever. The mix brings forth a unique equilibrium in between all individual elements, making the whole sounding like a whole indeed. That brings me easily to what I referred to in a former paragraph: the importance of the connection in between the leading parts and the energetic rhythm support. Yet still, somehow there is that necessary rawness in the sound. It would be a shame if the result was like surgically sweet, but I am glad to notice that slightly unpolished finalisation.
The attitude, finally, is of great importance as well. Well, you better do not expect something totally renewing here. No, when talking about originality, the story stops right here. But then again, Flageladör do certainly not sound like a cheap copycat. Their material is a pure and honest tribute to the Old School, and influences from everything in between Toxic Holocaust, Midnight, Em Ruinas, Aura Noir, Whipstriker, Nocturnal Breed, Bewitched and the likes – even Bathory, Motörhead and Venom might come to mind – are passing by quite easily. The song writing is one thing, the execution another one, yet if both correspond well, with an atmosphere that breathes booze and babes, elegance and arrogance, the result isn’t anything but a recommendation for all fans of higher mentioned acts.