|Musical Style: Metal/Thrash||Produced By: Boarders & Stephen Parodi|
|Record Label: Quam Libet||Country Of Origin: Italy|
|Year Released: 2007||Artist Website: Boarders|
|Tracks: 11||Rating: 85%|
|Running Time: 47:11|
Italy is home to Boarders and the metal and thrash influenced sounds of its 2007 full length outing The World Hates Me. A band that can trace its history back to the late eighties, Boarders presents a unique melding of the aggressive and melodic that draws extensively from the musical trends of the decade in question. And nowhere is that more evident than in the groups thrash heavy material in that “Schmertzgarten”, “Deliver You Back To Hell”, “For What It’s Worth” and “W.P.D.” all deliver a sound certain to garner the interest of those into Megadeth, Metallica, Tourniquet and old school Deliverance. As a matter of fact, Boarders once gained renown in Italy – back in their pre-Christian days – as a Megadeth cover band; hence, the inclusion of the old Megadeth song “In My Darkest Hour” (off So Far, So Good, So What) makes perfect sense. A more melodic aspect to the bands songwriting skills, on the other hand, can be found in the straightforward metal and hard rock direction taken on “True Rebellion”, “Baptized With Fire” and “Jump For Joy”. Fast, energetic and catchy, these are three up-tempo numbers that bring to mind Bride (both late eighties and early nineties era), X-Sinner and AC/DC, Barren Cross and Whitecross. Boarders even displays its versatility with two quieter and laid back pieces in “Never Alone” and “Till Life Do Us One” along with its mostly instrumental – and aptly entitled – title track.
Originally released in 2007 on the German label Quam Libet, The World Hates Me was re-issued in January of 2009 by Retroactive Records.
To say that lead vocalist Egi owns a set of pipes would be an understatement. While staying mostly in mid-octave territory with a vocal style that is equal parts clean and equal parts gritty, he adds a harsh element to his delivery on “Deliver You Back To Hell” and even mixes in some extreme growling on “For What It’s Worth”. On “Never Alone”, in contrast, he smoothes things out with a more refined side to his vocal skills and adds some high pitched falsettos on “W.P.D.”.
Lead guitarist Gigi proves every bit as much a talent, combining with Egi on rhythm guitar to contribute the albums catchy guitar riffs – some faster and more up-tempo and others slower but heavier – while furnishing its scorching lead guitar. The albums low end, at the same time, makes its presence felt as well. Give credit to Oscar and Roby for joining an excess of pronounced bass lines with a pummeling drum sound to put in place a rhythm section that is nothing less than monstrous.
Production values are quite clean in allowing all the instrumentation – particularly the lead guitar and drums – to evenly rise above the mix.
It is also worth noting the bold and forthright lyrical direction taken by Boarders.
The album gets off to a strong start with the high energy sounds of “True Rebellion”. Commencing to several seconds of open air rhythm guitar, the song moves ahead at an upbeat tempo until culminating for a keyed up chorus delivered in catchy but hard hitting fashion. What we have here is an energetic and gripping track guaranteed to pull you in on first listen. Lyrics are solid as well:
My rebellion is in You
Hands high for the King of Kings
Give praise to the only God who lives
The rollicking initiative is maintained on “Baptized With Fire”. A more aggressive and thrash flavored piece, this one begins to a run of intense sounding double bass before a forward swell of rhythm guitar holds sway over its verse portions hard and heavy. A chorus of a spirited variety finds the band making a statement of faith:
What have you done
Lord for me!
In Your Blood
There’s all I’ll ever need
I’ll ever need
Gigi contributes a blazing guitar solo to a song that in the end comes across worshipful in feel:
The gates of hell shall not prevail
Against my Church you said and so
Honor and glory
To You Lord of Hosts
“Schmertzgarten” is a mid-tempo cruncher that also reflects a thrash influence. The song starts to an instrumental section that opens slowly only to pick up in pace to a blend of driving riffs and pounding double bass. Abruptly tapering off to a quietly played guitar line, “Schmertzgarten” flows through its first verse before the rhythm guitar kicks in at the start of the second, leading the way with authority until a chorus backed by more double bass is procured. “Schmertzgarten” deals with the holocaust:
In their evil’s garden we are
Victims of ignorance
Hanging in the dark
Humiliated and tortured
Just to honor science
Raped puppets dancing
To entertain the masters of war
The ballad “Never Alone” showcases some of the albums more tranquil moments. An atmospheric setting is established as the song calmly progresses, making a graceful transition as it acquires a fleeting chorus that comes across near commercial in capacity. Egi puts forth a vocal performance that is at times scratchy and at others on the smoother side of things. Very well done fluidly mixed guitar solo as well.
“In My Darkest Hour”, once again, is an old Megadeth cover. Opening to a brief stretch of quietly played guitar, the song moves forward in a near heavy handed manner as it traverses a maze of forceful sounding time change. After the scene evens out for a blistering guitar solo, the way is paved for a sweeping chorus with a catchy hook that will pull you in and refuse to let go. It also must be notes the effective display by the band of its instrumental sound.
Up-tempo hard rock would be the best way to describe “Jump For Joy”. A pounding guitar riff gets things underway before the song races ahead with a plethora of determination, not missing a beat as it moves on to a torrid chorus sustained by Egi’s impassioned vocal delivery. A blistering guitar solo stands in perfect complement to the ardent setting. “Jump For Joy” talks about doing exactly that:
Knowing I was just a snake was
Another little step ahead
Now expectations filling me ‘cause
He said “The Truth will set you free”
And I say
Jump for joy
Let your spirit arise
Jump for joy
Cry your heart out for life
“For What It’s Worth” is the albums most “extreme” sounding track. A three minute explosion of non-stop energy, the song takes a foundation of chunky, thrash heavy riffs and combines them with a vocal performance of a near grinding variety. While I more often than not end up skipping over this one, those whose musical tastes stray towards the more aggressive side of things will certainly find a home here.
“Deliver You Back To Hell” joins elements of thrash and metal (kind of like Live To Die era Bride). The song is set in motion by some guitar feedback before moving forward at an assertive mid-tempo pace, a portent setting established on its way to a fleeting chorus delivered with an excess of hook filled momentum. Another stretch of skillfully done lead guitar work.
An instrumental section reinforced by a fast paced guitar riff introduces “W.P.D.”. Sustaining the fixed impetus, the song cuts a path of attitude-laden ruin on its way to a chorus in which a contentious backdrop is put into place. No, this is not one of the albums catchiest tracks but the all out energy generated by the bands performance puts it over the top. “W.P.D.” stands for “work-pay-die”:
Your own greed
Selfish man who can’t feel no peace
Way to poisoning
Don’t you bother I’m
Work Pay Die
“Till Life Do Us One” is a quieter composition accentuated its distance by an acoustic guitar, reflecting an atmospheric feel during its verse portions until vocal harmonies step forward in time to shore up its smooth sounding chorus. What we have here is a song of faith:
You don’t worry a thing
Just put belief in Him
How come we’ve gone so far?
Till life do us one
And all the people said “Amen!”
A stylishly played guitar solo holds sway over the instrumental section closing out the songs final minute.
The albums title track is an experimental – and mostly instrumental – number initiated by a doom-like guitar riff that stands in support of narration from Luke 10:3. The song proceeds to slowly crawl ahead until keyboards enter the mix as more narration is delivered, this time from John 15:18-19. The last several minutes to “The World Hates Me” are instrumental as a blend of driving rhythm guitar, pronounced bass lines and fiery soloing leads the way.
Review by: Andrew Rockwell
Track Listing: “True Rebellion” (3:57), “Baptized With Fire” (3:53), “Schmertzgarten” (4:25), “Never Alone” ( 4:22), “In My Darkest Hour” ( 6:16), “Jump For Joy” ( 4:12), “For What It’s Worth” (3:07), “Deliver You Back To Hell” (4:13), “W.P.D.” ( 3:25), “Till Life Do Us One” ( 3:57), “The World Hates Me” (5:24)
Egi – Lead Vocals & Guitars
Gigi – Guitars
Roby – Drums & Percussions
Oscar - Bass