Despised Icon The Ills of Modern Man

Despised Icon The Ills of Modern Man
They’re right at the forefront of the emerging Quebec metal new school, with insanely talented bands like Beneath the Massacre and Ion Dissonance nipping at their extreme buds, so we all just knew Despised Icon would up the ante with The Ills of Modern Man, their second disc for Century Media. And they have, with added space to breathe when it’s needed, as in really, really heavy opener "In the Arms of Perdition,” and an increased emphasis on brutal technicality — see the title track for details. It sounds cliché to say the band have both simplified and gotten crazier but it’s true. I love those ultra-guttural low vocals, as found on "Furtive Monologue” — that might be the lowest I’ve heard any extreme vocalist go yet. With two singers (Alex Erian and Steve Marois), there’s no shortage of varied vocal sounds but don’t worry, there’s no clean singing to be found. The great drumming of Alex Pelletier just rules, with perfect blast beats and gravity blasts galore, the clicking production sound only dragging things down slightly. Add in some vicious groove and a hardcore edge and this is as good as it gets when it comes to modern technical extremity.

What was the mindset going in to the writing this time around?
Vocalist Alex Erian: I’m sure certain kids expect us to sell out but honestly, this record grew into something that’s considerably more death metal-oriented than our previous efforts. The blast beats are faster and the extreme parts of the songs are generally longer and more technical. That might explain some of the craziness. Our song structures are definitely better now and that might explain why some of our newer stuff might seem a bit simplified, at times. Instead of being a collection of random riffs put one after the other, the songs sound focused.

What are the ills of modern man?
The lyrics on the record deal mostly with our flaws and personal issues. Screaming about the bullshit that blinds you from being more optimistic does sound cheesy but it’s quite therapeutic. Being pissed is natural and venting it musically helps, yet I try to do so while keeping in mind that the ills that surround this world are much larger than my own little battles. (Century Media)