JAM Magazine CD Review

April , 2011
Review by Roy Turner

American Ritual

"The Battle Of Good And Evil"

Label: Venom Records

The first record from this 4-piece out of Dallas, TX is as ambitious and loud as it is generic and flaccid. In fact, everything about this band (especially their image) suffers from a complete and utter lack of self-awareness. The over-used prefix of American in their name and the title of the record conjure a conceptualized expression that never seems to materialize (and frankly sounds corny). These are the guys that wear Ed Hardy t-shirts and take themselves way too seriously without it ever occurring to them how unoriginal the whole thing is. We have all made some first miss-steps and for that I am willing to forgive a few things (however the picture of the stage covered in BUBBLES from a recent show is not one of them).

However, it's not all bad; there are actually some great riffs on this record. If they weren't so influenced by so much of the limp dicks that are currently in heavy rotation. Breaking Benjamin, Seether, Three Days Grace (or basically anything on 97.1 The Eagle) and shoot for something with balls, than perhaps they could compete. There is a strong sense of musicianship but they seem less interested in that, and more in sounding like 3 Doors Down or something that a WWE wrestler would walk to the ring to.

Songs like The Quake and Haunted have decent leads to them, but the lyrics are as embarrassing as the guy singing them. My advice would be: Change the name, fire the singer, whoever is writing the lyrics is no longer allowed to do so - or maybe the guitar player should just switch bands? Regardless, someone please buy these guys some decent whiskey and any record by The Melvins.