CD Review – Tainted – Carved and Created
a review on Tainted submitted by CEOMong.
Solid, constantly surprising speed metal, some amazing talents at work here. Never a dull moment, there's always something tweaky and epic going on, more often than not eliciting an awestruck admiring grin and headbang. I found myself cranking up the air-axe a few times, and bashing out some staunch rhythms on the desk – epic.
Beautifully constructed sound from all 5 band-members, a fantastically engineered balance – so much cohesive sound its hard to pick out any single element, but easy all at the same time. These guys have got to be seen live, I've always felt a CD is but a pale reflection of a bands' performance, if so they could definitely be the best band you've ever seen. Outstanding album artwork, resplendent in reds and blacks – just another awesome thing about this awesome album.
Track 1 – Beneath the Veneer - deep tweaky riff to open, rapid double kick drums. Throaty vocals, fast-paced and heavy. Epic, boot stomping riffs throughout, I especially like the tweaky feedbackie bits in the chorus.
Track 2 – Say What You Mean - continues the rapid pace with some jangly animal feel madness, an awesome sounding track, I'm really impressed by the drummers' endurance and skill – teamed up with screaming axes and howling bass, and always doing something different. Sweet.
Track 3 – Scars - more of a dropping, abrupt power riff at play now, before settling into some gold ole power metal. Amazing quick little riffs scattered throughout, enough to amaze and make you want more, bittersweet, as you know there's more, but not quite like the bit you've just heard.
Track 4 – Broken - bit of a country theme to begin, all rawhide and horseflesh, dipped in molten metal … simmering towards a blistering crescendo of awesomeness.
Track 5 – Entrenched - another wicked awesome power ballad hook grabbing and feasting on your innards, teamed up with more fast-paced double-bass goodness and tweaky riffs – so much energy throughout this album its scary.
Track 6 – Carved and Created … - dropping straight into the middle of a power riff, continuing the theme and pace of the album. Very catchy lyrics.
Track 7 - … Vengeance - an almost gothic repartee to track 6 unleashes itself, very tricky and delicate axe layered over Tainteds' dependable and staunch rhythm section and velvety gravel vocals.
Track 8 – Departed - bluesy axe hook draws you in to another epic tune, chock full of martial and grandiose atmosphere.
Track 9 – Bound By My Own - another fantastic tune, awesomely blending wicked double-bass and dextrous axe work.
Track 10 – Tyranny - a solid resounding final track, catchy short sharp riffs really get the head banging, digits tapping, and boots stomping. More impressive work, this is truly a fantastic piece of work – non-stop, right up the very last second. I want more!
Consider me Tainted.
Carved and Created Review by NZROCK.COM
After emerging with their scorching debut 'The Awakening' back in 2006, Christchurch Thrash / Death Metal outfit TAINTED immediately became a household name in New Zealand Metal. Two years later, with the release of 'Carved And Created' they've have done it again, actually this time they've totally outdone themselves with what is no doubt one of the strongest Metal releases to come out of Aotearoa in 2008!
Recorded at Auckland's York Street Studios and produced to perfection by Clint Murpy, 'Carved And Created' is 10 tracks of diverse and captivating Trash / Death Metal. A well rounded mixture of both heavy and technical guitar mastery woven together by catchy melodic hooks from start to finish. Songs like 'Scars' and '…Vengeance' were well ingrained into my memory from the first listen and TAINTED are sounding super tight as a band throughout this recording.
I've always heard the Swedish Melodic Death Metal sound shine through with TAINTED and on 'Carved And Created' it's still there for sure. 'Say What You Mean' totally has that DARK TRANQUILLITY feel while the haunting tune behind 'Departed' reminds me of something off CEMETARY's 'Sundown' album.
An awesome album from an awesome band! You're only going to be hearing more good things from these guys! Make sure you check TAINTED out on their 'Carved And Created' CD Release Tour this November and at the Southern Amp music festival in Christchurch on 9 November!
Review by Dave Borgioli-Jones
The Groove Guide
The Past year has been a fruitful one for Christchurch metal band Tainted; opening for Iron maiden, playing Southern Amp and being officially endorsed by Jackson Guitars. Amongst all of this, the release of their latest album, Carved and Created, might have gotten lost amongst the other plaudits they’ve received – which would be a shame, given the calibre of material that emanated from the record. While there is a concurrent melody throughout the album (palm muting, double kicks a-plenty and pinch harmonics as tight as Zakk Wilde’s), metal fans will be the first to notice and implore the diversity within 40 minutes; ‘Broken’ earnestly nodding, some might say, to Machine Head circa The More Things Change, ‘Say What You Mean’ has an air of Dez Fafara’s Devildriver with the deep, deathly growls and the grandeur, speed metal-esque delivery the song has on the whole. In fact it’s easy to say Tainted runs the gamut of styles here and it works, because it’s executed with such conviction, it hardly ever seems like their replicating former artists, more influenced and honed to their own distinct aesthetic.
Waikato times 8/1/09
Christchurch-based Tainted has delivered the goods with this sophomore release. Speed, precision and originality help define one of the best New Zealand metal releases of 2008. The production on the album is fresh and big, and the riffs are epic. Tainted deserve the attention of the metal community and with the success of this first album is likely to get it.
Carved And Created
A damn solid piece of metal the whole country can be proud of; Carved And Created has been crafted out of solid southern metal complete with rapid fire riffing, devilish double kicks and vicious vocal chokeholds. “Beneath The Veneer” splits lips and heads with its punchy intro and spitting vocal fury.
You get the idea of the bands power and passion right from the word go. “Say What You Mean” is a bombastic beating of a song as well, grunty and hooky with real attitude. “Scars” could do damn well overseas, a huge, brutish track, its aggressive and haunting and I’d love to see it (or “ …Vengeance”) on a major horror movie soundtrack, it’d be perfect. “Broken” again shows the lads knack for classy song writing and explores more of a dynamic range. A serious kick drum stomp propels you head first into a heavy curtain of dark chords, dark octaves and offbeat china crashes. It’s a menacing feel and lets you know these guys are f’n serious! Carved And Created wasn’t just written in 30 minutes in the studio and it shows.
The songs have been agonised over and beaten hard to get to the pristine state they are in. The album is solid till the end and showcases some nice playing all round. The guitars are fierce, tight and up front. Vocalist Slim steals the day with a shrieking, roaring vocal assault that keeps up with the intense power of the double kick. Very metal, very good.
Christchurch’s Tainted have been together for a few years, the quality of their heavy-as sound recognised when they got chosen to support Iron Maiden in Christchurch last month. The five-piece’s second album Carved and Created is an unrelenting offering of modern metal.
There’s no question they’re an incredibly well drilled outfit, and there’s not an ounce of fat to be found here. Although there are clear thrash influences, this is getting pretty close to the emerging deathcore movement. Produced by York Street Studio’s Clint Murphy, it sounds awesome, immensely heavy and full, with each element given the space it needs to breathe.
Vocalist Slim’s contribution is particularly noteworthy, as his harsh, almost black metal vocals are perfectly pitched. Carved and Created deserves to be heard by influential ears overseas.
TAINTED: Carved & Created
By Ania Glowacz
This is one to blow you away completely. Straight in, hardcore metal, professional and polished, this album is absolutely astounding! It was recorded at York Street Studios, produced by Clint Murphy, with engineering by Clint and Simon Gooding with assistance from Nick Poortman. All parties can be extremely proud of their work, this is simply the best metal album NZ has produced to date, period. It is the second album for Tainted, a five-piece from Christchurch (Tim, Linly, Leith, Slim and Sean), who are world class. You don’t have to take my word for it – supporting Iron Maiden at the Westpac Stadium, endorsements from manufacturers including Jackson Guitars, these boys have got it in spades. Whilst you can pick hints of melodic Swedish death metal and Cradle Of Filth in there, this is really all original and all ours. No metal fan will be disappointed. High energy and hard out. Huge double kick pedal, massive crushing riffs, thundering drums and bass – it’s all there. You can wipe the floor clean with this one. Check out Scars with its Jakob intro, or just be reassured that this album is exceptional and of extremely high quality. Looks good, sounds incredible. •