Cowards Empire


With so many Death Metal acts out there, it takes something special to stand out […]
By Sammy M
October 12, 2016
Node - Cowards Empire album cover

With so many Death Metal acts out there, it takes something special to stand out and make a name for yourself. You would think that with 22 years of experience under their belts, that NODE would know this, and do what it takes to separate themselves from the horde. NODE formed in 1994 in Italy and have gone though many incarnations up to this point, with original vocalist Gary D'Aramo sticking around, although now primarily on guitar, he makes the only original member to power through the relatively long career of this band. Everything about NODE is solid, they know how to play, and they know how to write music. Adding this to the fact that the gel really well as a band and have an extremely solid and smooth sound, there really shouldn't be much to complain about. The issue is that that really don't do anything special, at least with this album to set themselves apart.

While there isn't actually any particular song on "Cowards Empire" that stands out as a weak link, the vast majority of the album also doesn't have a lot that stands out as a great song. The exception to this would be the 7 minute 55 seconds long instrumental "The Plot Survives". This piece does everything right and completely breaks up the monotony of what preceded it and the incredibly average song that follows it. If NODE could learn from this and make more songs that step away from the death metal comfort zone that they have set themselves in to, the album could be great. They have proven that they are excellent musicians and decent song writers, but unfortunately one great song doesn't do much to elevate the album to the heights I, personally, would have liked to have seen it get to.

With this being the 6th album in a fairly long career, it feels disappointing that it doesn't offer more than it does, and while "The Plot Survives" is great, the rest of "Cowards Empire" felt like the band was just going through the motions. It was a fairly long break between their last album and this one, and often a band just needs to shake off some rust before they can crank out another great album. So hopefully the next one is better.

3 / 10









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"Cowards Empire" Track-listing:

1. Stagnation
2. Death Redeems
3. Lambs
4. Average Voter
5. Locked In
6. No Reason
7. Money Machine
8. The Truck
9. Still The Same
10. LiarDotCom
11. The Plot Survives
12. The Children (2016 version)

Node Lineup:

Gary D'Aramo - Guitar/Vocals
CN Sid - Vocals
Pietro Battanta - Drums
Rudy Gonella Diaza - Guitar
Davide De Robertis - Bass

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