Rating:
8.3
Prong - Ruining Lives
23 April 2014


01. Turnover
02. The Barriers
03. Windows Shut
04. Remove, Separate Self
05. Ruining Lives
06. Absence Of Light
07. The Book Of Change
08. Self Will Run Riot
09. Come To Realize
10. Chamber Of Thought
11. Limitations And Validations
12. Retreat [bonus]


Tommy Victor has been around the block a few times. Ever since 1986 he has piloted the industrial thrash band Prong, played with mega-musicians Rob Zombie and Glen Danzig and even had a death wish making records and touring with Al Jourgensen and Ministry.

His best work in my opinion are those early Prong records. Starting with Beg To Differ and ending with Rude Awakening; those albums are highly regarded in the old-school thrash community. The band's closest touch with commercial success and their best album in that period is Cleansing because even though it's a "thrash" album there are many other elements that make it unique. Jazz and bluesy based riffs, sonic bass and drums booming together and electronic samples and industrial tones pinging with the overall sound. Ruining Lives attempts to recapture those glory days.

Pummeling, bludgeoning and aggressive riffage has always been Prong's go to pitch but they also bring more to the plate. Songs like "Windows Shut" and "Self Will Run Riot" incorporate infectious, heavy groove metal and add a bit of an odd tempo change for creativity and maximum effect. Also, being one of original New York thrash metal bands, post-punk/hardcore/crossover elements prevail.

Exceptionally creative riffs and tense bass and drum beats create stylistic and frantic themes. Victor's speak, sing, scream style vocals, though not very innovative, works very well with the technical aspects and overall tightness of the sound. Heck, every song has its own individuality and all are very contagious. I was never bored listening to this album and I get a sense of melody from each song.

When you get right down to it, the meat and potatoes of Prong's tactics are Tommy Victor's silky smooth guitar textures. Don't expect a lot of guitar solos and bang your head moments, instead enjoy Ruining Lives flawless production, apparent chemistry between band mates and hard edge thrash simultaneously experimenting with industrial substance.

The musicianship, compositions and atmosphere which steer Ruining Lives deliver that late '80's, early '90's Prong sound I so wanted to come back. This is a fun album to listen to and I hope this release is one of many more Prong albums returning the cadence that got them started.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Production: 10


Band profile: Prong
Album: Ruining Lives


 



Written on 18.05.2014 by
tea[m]ster
Be gentle, I never said I was any good at this!
More reviews by tea[m]ster ››



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Lit. - 18.05.2014 at 19:14  
Sold. I had just listened to Carved Into Stone after putting it off for so long. I'm definitely jumping at this one.
!J.O.O.E.! - 18.05.2014 at 19:17  
Heard a track from this the other day and it sounded pretty rad. I'll check this sometime.
tea[m]ster - 18.05.2014 at 19:17  
Written by Lit. on 18.05.2014 at 19:14

Sold. I had just listened to Carved Into Stone after putting it off for so long. I'm definitely jumping at this one.


Yea Lit. I have always loved the "old" Prong/Tommy Victor guitar sound. So fucking immaculate.
tea[m]ster - 18.05.2014 at 19:20  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 18.05.2014 at 19:17

Heard a track from this the other day and it sounded pretty rad. I'll check this sometime.


I don't listen to thrash much anymore; mainly new albums that my old favorite bands put out ...Death Angel, Voivod and Prong. Nice little diversion from my normal music "routine".
Cynic Metalhead - 18.05.2014 at 21:25  
Why this Guest Review is lined up in main section of the review?

Good review, team.

I'll check out the record soon.
deadone - 19.05.2014 at 01:44  
Great review.

Carved Into Stone was brilliant and sounds like this one follows on. I'll definitely check it out.
Ag Fox - 19.05.2014 at 19:55  
Well written review, though I don't share your enthusiasm )= I enjoyed Carved into Stone more =P

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