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Municipal Waste - Slime And Punishment review

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Band: Municipal Waste
Album: Slime And Punishment
Release date: June 2017

01. Breathe Grease
02. Enjoy The Night
03. Dingy Situations
04. Shrednecks
05. Poison The Preacher
06. Bourbon Discipline
07. Parole Violators
08. Slime And Punishment
09. Amateur Sketch
10. Excessive Celebration
11. Low Tolerance
12. Under The Waste Command
13. Death Proof
14. Think Fast

The party goes on.

The Virginian masters of party thrash returned to the party with their 6th full length effort Slime And Punishment yet found themselves no longer the life of the party; where before their odes to partying until you puke would inspire you to follow in the footsteps of the Sadistic Magician, the hangover had started to take effect and the constant calls to partying were as welcome as a warm beer.

While never the most varied or versatile in terms of output, the band have always overcome these shortcomings by making memorable and enjoyable tracks that distract you from any real concerns that there is little in terms of variation. Slime And Punishment, however, lacks this trade-off and as a result leaves you abundantly aware that Municipal Waste have done this before, and much better as well.

So what does Slime And Punishment lack? It's a mixture of a somewhat stale formula repeated without much in the way of a memorable riff or moment that punctuates the whirlwind with any character to elevate it beyond a generic version of what the band has produced before. Take "Repossession" and "You're Cut Off" off their prior record The Fatal Feast; neither are among the best cuts off the record, but they have something identifiable about them. With few exceptions, much of Slime And Punishment is an indistinguishable blur even with repeated listens.

The addition of second guitarist Nick Poulos is a quiet introduction; unless you knew he was there you wouldn't notice musically, given that Waste has always doubled his parts before and Poulos isn't able to impart much of his own character into the mix. Alongside the rest of the band, Municipal Waste clock in and clock out with no real issues to be had either way; they play their material and you nod your head along before the album ends and you put the album back on the shelf.

With this said, it doesn't mean Slime And Punishment is a total write-off; while it features probably their smallest batch of great songs to date (Massive Aggressive had more great songs but its worst moments outweigh those here), it doesn't hit terrible depths either. It is simply an album that plays out without much of a reaction beyond a shoulder shrug. No song is really bad, there isn't much that will make you want to hear anything again either; it's an album that will sit on your shelf and gather dust until a moment of spontaneity gets you to throw it in your record player.

Tracks like "Shrednecks", "Bourbon Discipline" and "Amateur Sketch" are the closest the band get to hitting their stride; while these songs click and stand tall against the rest of the record, they still pale against their prior hits.

As much as I enjoy the band, I can't really recommend Slime And Punishment as anything more than more fodder to be added to your collection of party metal; while it'll give you more playtime, it won't add much in the way of quality or standout moments. Municipal Waste have done better before and hopefully they can do better again; the party isn't over but there is certainly a lull in the middle, and it's waiting for something truly explosive to kick it back into gear.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 6
Songwriting: 6
Originality: 5
Production: 8

Written on 15.02.2021 by Just because I don't care doesn't mean I'm not listening.

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