Millennium Ride (Metal Blade)
by Scott Hefflon
“Hey, you’re from Sweden, wanna record contract?” In case you live under a rock (not in the rock), you know Sweden is the latest Seattle: every semi-decent band signed and rushed into the studio before the bottom falls out and people get sick of yet another trend lauded as the saving grace of rock. Vermin are produced by Tomas Skogsburg (Entombed, Grave, Hellacopters — you’ll know it when you hear it), and like Ross Robinson or The Blasting Room duo (they do mostly punk, for those of you still stuck in one genre), sometimes that’s all that matters. Vermin ain’t bad, but they sure aren’t the kinda thing that’ll get yer panties wet. Strolling riffs Entombed’d pass on cuz they’re too dull, monotone hardcore vocals sprinkled with death roar to double what little value it has, and general bash’n’smash that sounds good because of the distinct production, but is uninspired and predictable when you get right down to it. Not to specifically target Vermin (they’re just in the CD player, but not for long), but aren’t we all kinda sick of discovering an exciting “new” sub-genre only to have it flooded by mediocre bands who never shoulda made it out of the garage? Woship the best and fuck the rest. How many opening bands do we really need?