Okay…first, the concept. Dethklok is a fictional animated band (as if there’s any other kind of animated band) and the primary focus of the Adult Swim cartoon “Metalocalypse”. Consisting of vocalist/visionary Nathan Explosion, guitarists Skwisgaar Skwigelf and Toki Wartooth (the fastest and second-fastest on the planet, respectively) bassist William Murderface, and Pickles the Drummer, the band is the most popular musical act on the planet, as well as the world’s 12th largest economy, right ahead of Belgium.
There’s much more, but we’ll just leave it at that for now.
Dethalbum, the first studio release by the band (actually consisting of writer Brandon Small and former-Strapping Young Lad drummer Gene Holgan), is fifteen tracks of Viking metal brutality, influenced by everyone from Saxon to Celtic Frost. The question is, how seriously do you take something like this?
The obvious answer is “Not at all, you twit,” but it’s honestly kind of hard not to at least be impressed by the effort that went into this project. While most songs, unsurprisingly, sound generally alike, they all feature some pretty decent riffs and technically sound solos on songs like “Murmaider,” “Hatredcopter,” and “Better Metal Snake.”
But the real appeal behind the album is the sly inside comedy that pervades the whole thing, an element that is at once its greatest quality as well as its downfall…that is, if Small was considering record sales. Which I doubt he is, so never mind.
Make no mistake, only fans of the show are really going to understand Dethalbum; you can still enjoy it, but the songs are downright hilarious if you know the tendencies and idiosyncrasies of the characters. Right up there with Smell the Glove.