Hypocrisy Destroys Wacken


Nuclear Blast Records, 1999


REVIEW BY: Christopher Thelen


The world of heavy metal music - once again coming to the limelight, albeit slowly - is filled with so many bands that one would be hard-pressed to say they recognize a good number of the groups. Even in my metalhead days in the '80s, I couldn't claim I knew a lot about many of the groups. Nowadays, it's even harder for me to keep track.

Hypocrisy is one of these bands that falls into the "possibly not so well known" category, but those in the know realize they've stumbled onto something good. Once just a death metal group, Peter Tägtgren and crew refined their sound and band vision over five years to become a well-respected group in their field. Almost calling it a day after their most recent studio effort The Final Chapter (they have a new album coming in the next few months), Hypocrisy gives their fans a special gift with my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Hypocrisy Destroys Wacken, a live album that is an incredibly powerful introduction to this group.

Recorded at the Wacken Open Air Festival in Germany in 1998, lead vocalist/guitarist Tägtgren, guitarist Mattias Kamijo, bassist Mikael Hadlund and drummer Lars Szöke plow through 11 tracks covering their entire career. If you've never heard Hypocrisy before this album as I hadn't, be prepared for one hell of a handshake. The tone of this band's music is incredible, with guitar lines that ring out (thanks possibly to Tägtgren's custom axe - is that an 11-string guitar?) and bore themselves into your skull.

Though not every song is played at breakneck speed, Hypocrisy know when it's time to turn up the juice and when it's best to let the power of the music itself do the talking. The album's opening cut, "Roswell 47," is a shining example of this musical control that Hypocrisy have. Likewise, "A Coming Race" contains possibly some of the strongest material from this live show.

Throughout it all, Tägtgren and crew never let the energy level dip. True, you might not understand every single word that Tägtgren growls into the microphone, but you don't need to decipher what he's saying to understand the brute force of the music presented in this concert. From "Buried" and "Left To Rot" to "Pleasure Of Molestation" and "The Final Chapter," Hypocrisy make every note count, as if they were playing their last show, and they want to go out on a positive note.

Hypocrisy Destroys Wacken is bolstered by four additional studio tracks, though I've been unable to discover if these were specially recorded for this album or if they were leftovers from previous sessions. Either way, it really doesn't matter, 'cause these tracks are just as good. Cuts like "TIme Warp", "Fuck U" and "Beginning Of The End" make the listener drool for the upcoming new studio album - and should make everyone want to thank Hypocrisy for deciding not to end the band after The Final Chapter.

Hypocrisy Destroys Wacken is a metal feast for the ears, though it admittedly isn't for everyone. Still, if you like getting a good buzz from hearing metal played the way it was meant to be played, then this album is sure to please.

Rating: A-

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 1999 Christopher Thelen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Nuclear Blast Records, and is used for informational purposes only.