arm.jpgHow to feel about Armamentarium, the third album in as many years from Germany’s Neaera? All the pieces are in place for a solid offering, and truth be told, there’s really nothing wrong with this album.

There’s nothing especially right about it, either. I hesitate to say that Neaera’s problem is that they’re working in the tired melodic metalcore genre as are a million other bands, because their countrymen in Heaven Shall Burn have found a way to keep said genre interesting for the umpteenth time with their latest release, Iconoclast; rather, I think Neaera are just missing that indefinable “it,” whatever the fuck “it” is*.

Because as musicians, Neaera are more than able, and ferocious riffs, bloodcurdling vocals, and monstrous breakdowns are plentiful here. But I’ve listened to this album three times and just can’t seem to really remember any of it with each listen. In the words of Dallas Coyle, it’s the songs, stupid. And Neaera just don’t have ’em.

That being said, I’m sure this band has its fans, and I would never begrudge anyone a passion for this album. Anyone who needs something to tide them over until the next, more substantial modern metal release could probably do a heckuva lot worse.

MS hornzMS hornzMS hornz
(three out of five horns)


*No Faith No More jokes, please.

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