Secrets and Lies

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It is always amusing when bands run around insisting that they are incredibly original and innovative when in fact, they are highly derivative. Not that derivative artists cannot be worthwhile or enjoyable artists -- excellence and a lack of originality are by no means mutually exclusive -- but still, if artists are going to send out press releases telling the world how groundbreaking they are, it's nice when they can back it up. And Taint is an example of a band that really has lived up to the claims in its press releases. Taint's press releases have described them as a distinctive band that doesn't fit neatly into one category, and sure enough, Secrets and Lies is as difficult to categorize as their previous release, The Ruin of Nová Roma. Those who think of this Welsh outfit as part of the stoner rock/doom metal/sludge field are not off base because that is, in fact, a main thrash metal/speed metal and hardcore (of the pre-metalcore, pre-screamo variety) to Neurosis to the southern side of alternative metal; play this release alongside one of Alabama Thunderpussy's albums, and it isn't hard to find some parallels. And the impressive thing is that instead of sounding confused or unfocused, Taint knows how to take all these different influences and come up with cohesive albums that sound organic and natural rather than forced. Taint comes across as a group of musicians who just happen to like many different types of aggressive rock, and their broad-mindedness serves them well on this hard-hitting, infectious disc.

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