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Hypocrisy - Destroys Wacken Live

1999 Nuclear Blast Records :: Reviewed by rofreason on 2005-07-06

Well, we all know the story now, how Hypocrisy was all set to call it quits, but how one show at the Milwaukee Metalfest last year saved us all. Even though the guy's got one of the hottest studios in the biz now, Tagtgren and crew deliver us not one, but two new Hypocrisy platters this year, the first being this live opus. Spanning all five studio albums, Destroys Wacken delivers excellent sound and more than adequate performaces of what could easily be termed Hypocrisy's Greatest Hits. As to be expected, the sound is awesome, filled out by second "live" guitarist Mattias Kamijo, who allows Tagtgren's solos to ring true without losing that rhythm guitar foundation which is crucial here. Why deem the performances only "more than adequate?" Well, it's all there, almost exactly as on disc, yet it may seem just a tad uninspired to me. I also keep hearing the accusations of "if they didn't practice enough", which springs to mind as I try to rate the drumwork. Szoke can play, but definitely comes across stronger in the studio, evidenced by his propensity to speed things up a tad while dropping off half of the killer fills from the record. So, while it's truly cool to hear the new material live, it's the older stuff that benefits the most from this '99 update. Left to Rot and Pleasure of Molestation coming to mind most, and prove to me again that I like Peter's multi-dimensional vocals much more. Of course, finishing up with a double shot of Killing Art (my fave from Abducted) and The Final Chapter doesn't hurt this much either! As an added bonus, we're given 4 "extra" tracks, which, based on the way Hypocrisy albums vary, could have all been on The Final Chapter. Apparent on each one is the signature guitar sound of the last album, yet 3 of the 4 tracks highlight Peter's clean vocal stylings. Time Warp is pretty speedy and technical, vocal delivery being in a more shout style, while Til the End does indeed pick up right where The Final Chapter left off. Requisite "punky" tune Fuck U is OK, lyrics a bit less than I'm come to expect, I guess. No matter though, as album closer Beginning of the End is a scorcher, wrapping things up with class. I do hear a few ideas repeated on these 4, which does happen sometimes with Hypocrisy material, but I mean, the guy practically writes all the stuff himself. New album "Cloned" should fix all that, as bandmates Szoke and Hedlund have evidently picked up a larger portion of the writing responsibility. We can now only wait