The Constant Weight of Zero

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Coming a full 13 years after their second album, 1991's Non-Existence, the third album by this St. Louis hardcore band sounds as if no time whatsoever had passed in between, which can be taken either as a measure of stylistic integrity, or near-total creative stasis. It depends on the listener's tolerance for by-the-numbers '80s-style hardcore. Ultraman's key component is singer Tim Jamison, who has a far better than average voice for this style of music, adding a melodic edge to the standard hoarse shouting in much the same way that Peter Searcy did in Squirrel Bait. With a less distinctive and talented singer, Ultraman would be completely boring, and even with Jamison's help, it's hard not to feel like you've heard this kind of metal-tinged thrash before. The CD also includes an EP's worth of songs, including the title track, from Krissy Fit, a short-lived reshuffling of Ultraman that preceded the band's official reunion in 1999.

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