VARIOUS ARTISTS
Monsters Of Death
(Nuclear Blast Records)
approx. 260:00min

This double DVD set gets promoted as "The ultimate Death Metal compilation"… and you know what? This is nothing but the truth for a change! Or do you know of any other Death Metal DVD that consists of no less than 59 video clips? See, me neither… So, all hail to Nuclear Blast for compiling this impressive release! The whole thing includes a fat, 36 pages booklet with additional info on each featured band, as well as an audio chapter with 7 tracks by SOILWORK, DISBELIEF, GRAVBWORM, WINTERSUN, OMNIUM GATHERUM, DIE APOKALYPTISCHEN REITER and PUNGENT STENCH (they might be previously unreleased… can’t tell you though as I’m not familiar with those bands’ releases). As far as the video section is concerned, well where ever there’s light there’s also shadow and unfortunately quite a lot of bands (even more established ones!) delivered pretty ridiculous looking results, which you either might blame on their often pretty young age or the lack of good visual ideas… Too bad, really! I mean, if you spend a lot of money on the production of a promotional video, you better make sure it increases the interest in your band as opposed to turn people off… In my case it unfortunately was very often the latter (even if the music was good) and therefore resulted in my ongoing boycott of live shows of almost every new or reformed band… The disappointment factor simply is too high if you extremely worship a particular record! But anyway, I got carried away a little bit… I’m not going to mention any names here, so let me just say that I mostly liked those type of videos that are showing the band in an energetic live situation (as uninspired as it may come across from an artists point of view). On the other hand, a couple of positive surprises to me certainly were the videos from SOILWORK, FINNTROLL or DARKANE (bands that I usually couldn’t care less about) – they really managed to get something across with their videos. Among the 59 videos, there’s also 6 live performances by TIAMAT, NECROPHOBIC, MALEVOLENT CREATION, ALL SHALL PARISH, IMMOLATION and DEATH (the latter two from their home videos though). The rest is a solid mixture of brutal and grinding Death as well as the more melodic side of this genre. Many known acts / clips (from MTV / VIVA) go hand in hand with a whole bunch of pretty much unknown and obscure stuff. I am just wondering what went wrong with NAPALM DEATH’s ‘Greed Killing’ (the music definitely not goes along correctly with the visual side AT ALL, which looks kinda strange, especially in the vocal department…). But all in all this is still a very cool release that you definitely should add to your collection (maybe right next to Osmose’s "A Collection Of Noisymotions" DVD) and I hope that more volumes will follow (as there’s still a whole bunch of clips available).

Frank Stöver

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