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Review: Exit Strategy - United States of Amnesia
Exit Strategy
United States of Amnesia

Label: Independent
Year released: 2008
Duration: 37:15
Tracks: 9
Genre: Death/Grind

Rating: 3.5/5

Review online: February 7, 2008
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Readers Rating
United States of Amnesia

Rated 3.5/5 (70%) (4 Votes)

Exit Strategy is a Death/Grind outfit hailing from Calgary, Alberta.  Interestingly, the band conveys a rather left-wing anti-war and "climate change aware" message on this album - political positions that are not exactly popular in what is known as the most right-wing province in the country.  I found this lyrical approach to be both annoying and funny - annoying in the sense that it reminds me a bit too much of the news, with idiotic politicians of the left, centre and right arguing for the sake of arguing, often sounding like they're trying to convince themselves (I'm talking about the politicians here, not the band! :)) and funny because of the spoken passages scattered throughout the album (the one on the opening track for instance is bound to bring a little smile to just about anyone.)  Aaaaanyway, this is Death/Grind, so it's not like the actual message is that easy do decipher, save for the aforementioned spoken passages.   The vocals are a mix of Death-ish growls, some raspy style not unlike what you hear in Blackened Death Metal, and of course some more core-ish vocals that sound OK for the most part - better than what I usually hear from such bands.

The music is quite chaotic, banking more on speed and "disorder" (as opposed to a more technical approach) than on sheer heaviness - well, it is Death/Grind after all.  Thankfully the band steers clear enough of the annoying Grind tendency of presenting hyperfast, ultrashort songs that finish before they start.  Here you get good song lengths, so you have time to get into the songs.  This is overall too chaotic to be all that memorable, although there are a couple of songs where things get a little more "melodic" and you get a few more memorable and more or less catchy guitar work.  Personally, it's the spoken passages - most of which are from politicians - that stuck in my mind, even after several spins, but people who are actually into this genre are bound to find something of interest here - be it the message, the music, or both.  Not bad at all, and better than I first expected.

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