Relapse Records has been releasing a series of compilations called Contaminated. These compilations feature most of their major recording artists and are usually pretty cheap. I got Vol. 6 in an ebay lot which included some CDs I wanted by Overkill, Venom, and other bands. For some reason I have only listened to this once before, despite owning it for nearly three years now. So, this will be like an Initial Impressions. I am also not real well-familiar with many of these bands. Relapse has been much more of a grindcore and stoner rock label over the years. Many of these bands are not metal. Although, there are some exceptions.
BURNT BY THE SUN: "FORLANI"
This is some sort of metalcore band with stoner doom/sludge-like riffs. It's surprisingly not that bad. I don't think that I would pick anything up by this band, but this isn't terrible. It could have been a lot worse.
MASTODON: "WHERE STRIDES THE BEHEMOTH"
Obviously Mastodon is a huge name now. This song though came off the band's full-length debut when they were just starting to make noise. This is the Mastodon that I prefer. The much more metal riffs and harsh vocals are superior in my mind to the progressive meandering of their later material.
BURST: "SCULPT THE LIVES"
Burst is widely regarded as a major influence on groups like Converge and The Dillinger Escape Plan. I don't like either of those two bands and I don't like this either. NFM. Next.
NILE: "EXECRATION TEXT"
Ah, here we go. I love Nile. I love their obsession with Egyptian mythology and some of the most down-tuned riffs and deep guttural vocals in death metal. This is an earlier song and Nile used to play really fast. This is the best stuff by Nile, they've gotten a little sludgy in recent years, but this was right at the height of their abilities.
DYSRHYTHMIA: "AND JUST GO"
This band is kind of odd. They're a progressive metal band from Brooklyn who combine unusual musical elements into their heavy metal. They are an instrumental band and have no vocals, so that's a little strange too. This is a bit of a slow-burning track. It takes a while to get going, and then never really goes anywhere. Pass.
THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN: "43 PERCENT BURNT"
I think I have made my feelings on this band clear on this blog. NFM. Next.
Noise rock, another scene I don't get. NFM. Next.
SKINLESS: "FROM SACRIFICE TO SURVIVAL"
I wouldn't say I am a Skinless fan, but I enjoy them on occasion. Especially after the last few tracks on this. The band combines old school death metal with slam metal, it's pretty decent. I own the album this song is from.
HIGH ON FIRE: "RAZOR HOOF"
High on Fire is quite possibly the next huge metal band. They have been gaining steam for some time now and their most recent album was a big success. This is from their second album. The thrash influences were not as prominent as the stoner doom influences (leader Matt Pike was in Sleep), but this is still a very good song. I haven't gone back to get much of this band's back catalog, maybe it's time to do so.
EXHUMED: "MATTER OF SPLATTER"
Exhumed is a death/thrash/grind band with very gory lyrics and imagery. This song is typical of the band's style, which is to say, I rather enjoy it.
DISFEAR: "ARROGANT BREED"
This is a Swedish hardcore band. As I am not much of a fan of hardcore, this song does not really appeal to me. It's pretty heavy and all, but it just doesn't do much for me. The song does feature Tomas Lindberg of At the Gates on vocals. I suppose that's at least semi-interesting.
NEUROSIS: "SUN THAT NEVER SETS"
I've never really understood the popularity of Neurosis and other bands like them. This song is very slow and meanders around a whole lot for a long time. I can still say that I don't understand. This post-metal stuff just isn't for me.
ALCHEMIST: "FIRST CONTACT"
Alchemist is a band from Australia that combines several different styles of metal along with tribal rhythms and other disparate musical influences. This is a very unique sound and the song is actually quite good. I may have to look into this band a little further.
DYING FETUS: "ONE SHOT, ONE KILL"
Ah, Dying Fetus, one of the most influential bands on the slam death genre. Slam death is one of my guilty pleasures, so I quite enjoy most things related to the genre. Dying Fetus themselves are probably not a slam band any longer, but they still absolutely crush it musically. This is a typical representation of the band.
CEPHALIC CARNAGE: "LUCID INTERVAL"
I don't know what to say about this band. I own one of their albums and they are all over the place. Grind, doom, death, thrash, black metal elements all mix in. They are a mindfuck. Some chemicals are probably involved, the legality of which I won't speculate. This song is pretty decent though, a bit more straightforward than most.
Nasum is a grindcore band with little to no metal influences. I prefer my grindcore with a healthy dose of death metal. Therefore, this song has little appeal to me. It's pretty much just noise. NFM.
TODAY IS THE DAY: "DESCENT"
More noise rock. More boredom. More NFM. Next.
This is boring and annoying. It's bornoying. NFM.
I'm starting to realize why I don't listen to this compilation much. There's not enough good music on it. Let's hope the second disc is better.
PIG DESTROYER: "TERRIFYER"
For some reason I always get Pig Destroyer and Cattle Decapitation mixed up. I want to start a band and call it Goat Mutilator or Chicken Filleter or Turkey Desecrator or Sheep Dismemberer. The grindcore band Pig Destroyer isn't bad, there's enough metal influences to keep me interested, but they don't do a whole lot for me.
THE END: "OF FIST AND FLAME"
This is a band very similar to The Dillinger Escape Plan. Draw your own conclusions about how I feel about The End.
SUFFOCATION: "SUBCONSCIOUSLY ENSLAVED"
Suffocation is an excellent band. I started listening to them after receiving this compilation. I now own five albums by them, including an EP, and a t-shirt. This song is just more high-quality work from the pioneering death metal band.
ZEKE: "KILL THE KING"
NFM, hardcore punk. Don't care. Next.
Sometimes, based on a band's name and song title, you can just tell what kind of music they play. Enter stoner doom (surprise, surprise) band Bongzilla. It's heavy, distorted Sabbathian riffing. Hey, that's stoner doom for you. Not bad at all.
UPHILL BATTLE: "WRECK OF NERVES"
This is probably an early example of deathcore. This band combines metalcore with grindcore, it's not too bad really. An interesting take on a genre, metalcore, that is usually very cliched.
CRYPTIC SLAUGHTER: "LOWLIFE"
This, I like. Cryptic Slaughter plays crossover thrash. The band reunited prior to this compilation being put together. This song appeared on the band's EP released in 2003. Then they broke up again. The vocals are tough to get used to, but the music rocks. Sometimes, that's all you need.
PENTAGRAM: "MUCH TOO YOUNG TO KNOW"
Pentagram is possibly the U.S.'s longest running metal band. The band dates back to the early 1970's. They play doom metal very influenced by Black Sabbath. This is definitely a band to check out.
AGORAPHOBIC NOSEBLEED: "SPREADING THE DISEASE"
Pure grindcore with little to no metal influence, and incredibly short. It took me as long to type this as to listen to the song. Slight exaggeration. NFM.
MANDIBLE CHATTER: "TANGLE IN DELIRIUM"
What the hell is this ambient crap? NFM, that's what.
ALABAMA THUNDERPUSSY: "OL' UNFAITHFUL"
Southern metal can sound pretty good sometimes. Think newer Corrosion of Conformity, Down, etc. This is another band in that vein. They sound pretty decent. Later on, Kyle Thomas of Exhorder would front the band, I would be very interested in hearing that. This song is pretty decent though. What a name. Just rolls off the tongue.
What a stupid name, but man does this sound good. Very fast death metal/grindcore. I'm impressed, despite having never heard of the band before.
HARVEY MILK: "I DO NOT KNOW HOW TO LIVE MY LIFE"
More noise rock. This song is just really annoying and I don't see the appeal of the band. NFM.
SOILENT GREEN: "THEY LIE TO HIDE THE TRUTH"
I enjoy Soilent Green quite a bit. Mostly that's because of the presence of Ben Falgoust (Goatwhore). They play a mix of sludge, death, and grindcore. It's an eclectic mix of styles, but they pull it off pretty well. Overall, it just feels dirty. That's alright though. Plus, Soilent Green is made of people.
BENUMB: "BREATHING LIFE INTO PREDESTINED FAILURE"
More superfast grindcore with no metal elements. NFM.
GENOCIDE SS: "HATESTOMP"
This is some sort of punk/rock side project group featuring members of various grindcore bands. I don't particularly care for it.
ADRENALIN O.D.: "POPE ON A ROPE"
Hardcore punk, NFM. Next.
REGURGITATE: "WAGING WAR ON BENEVOLENCE"
Sloppy-sounding goregrind band. It's pretty much all noise and filth. Surprisingly decent.
DAYLIGHT DIES: "LINE THAT DIVIDES"
Finally another song by a band I genuinely like. Daylight Dies is a very good death/doom metal band out of the U.S. Extremely melodic and melancholic. This music is very powerful musically and very emotional. This song comes from a time when they used more harsh vocals. A great song.
VIDNA OBMANA: "SKIN STRIP"
This is just ambient noise and twiddling knobs on a keyboard. NFM. Next.
HALO: "FILLING THE EMPTY SPACES WITH CASH"
This is just droning noise. I don't understand drone and I don't consider it metal. Next.
Oh, that's it. That's fine then. I can see why I don't listen to this very often. For every one good song, there's several that are bad. Awful.