Face Down

Face Down

The Twisted Rule the Wicked

Nuclear Blast

Much gabbed about hybrid of Machine Head’s hey-tough-guy bravado, Entombed’s death ‘n roll and maybe Low-era Testament (itself a distillation of a million other bands). Face Down is an undeniably powerful band, with pummeling riffs and a vicious (if a bit noisy) production from Danne Bergstrand (Stuck Mojo, Meshuggah). The Twisted Rule the Wicked is one of those discs where the intensity overcomes the general samey-ness of the material, especially toward the end when the good stuff sorta peters out. Right off the bat, “Dead Breed” hits with a roundhouse wallop (Pat calls music like this a ‘kick in the dick,’ and that’s about right). If the rest of the record was as strong, it’d be album of the year, but it might be too much to expect a new band to maintain that much intensity for that long, especially in a niche of metal fast wearing out its welcome in discerning ears. Face Down definitely pull off a hard-assed debut here, though, well worth picking up if you’re up for a good beatdown. At the very least, keep your eye on them; they could be heavyweights much sooner than you’d think. Nuclear Blast America, P.O. Box 15877, Tampa 33684-0877; http://www.nuclearblast-usa.com

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