Intellectual property lawyers take their jobs seriously, and no one knows that better than the members of Total War. At first, this Swedish death metal/black metal outfit (a side project for Dark Funeral guitarist Blackmoon) called itself WAR. But there was a major problem: The famous soul/funk band War threatened legal action and demanded a name change, and the Swedish headbangers became Total War. Released in the U.S. in 2001, We Are...Total War is a collection of material that was recorded in 1996 and 1997 and originally appeared on either the Swedes' first album, Total War, or its sophomore effort, We Are War. The material is basic Scandinavian death metal/black metal -- nothing exceptional or distinctive, but exhilarating and fairly enjoyable if you have a taste for headbanger stuff that is ferocious and mercilessly blistering. The lyrics deal with two main topics -- Satanism and war -- and while other headbangers will examine and discuss evil without actually promoting it, Total War brings a very anti-Christian viewpoint to bonecrushing tunes like "Soldiers of Satan," "Satan's Millennium," and "666." Not that you can hear all of the lyrics; singer All screeches in a way that makes most of the lyrics hard to understand. Nonetheless, those who are offended by such lyrics will want to look elsewhere. We Are...Total War is strictly for headbangers who like extreme lyrics to go with their extreme metal.
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AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson