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WAYD - Decadance CD

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Third full length of this technical and experimental death metal band from Slovakia. For fans of CYNIC, CRYPTOPSY, ATHEIST...

Metal Archives [84%]:
Wayd's 2003 release 'Decadence' is, in some ways, a very satisfying death metal effort. They manage to keep their sound fresh throughout the album by way of tossing in some syncopated rhythms in lieu of the typical chugging power chord lines. They use some way-cool complex harmonies that create the lush jazzy vibe that is present throughout the album. Perhaps most impressive of all is the fact that they have several solos, yet resist the oh-so-common urge to shred it up when the opportunity presents. Instead, they use very melodic and stylistic solos, eschewing the typical up-tempo pentatonic "look ma, no hands!" kind of solo for something much classier.
A great example of this can be seen in 'Velvet Deserts', where a clean guitar solo floats above a bit of acoustic strumming in the softer part of the song. Wayd are able to write some legitimately intense death metal when they want to (see: the beginning of Dust, which is also a good example of the complex harmonies they use), but they're also willing to chill out, which is something that a lot of death metal bands could learn from. "Yes, Goatrape Heathens, you evoke a serious feeling of satan satan satan in your music, but wouldn't it be better if you provided some softer spots too, y'know, for contrast?" If hypothetical band "Goatrape Heathens" were Wayd, they'd say Hell Yes.
In addition, the performances from each of the band members for Decadence are great. The vocalist in particular is very talented, providing great rough vocals that are still somewhat intelligible. Likewise, the drummer knows when to slam the pedal to the medal and when to hold back a bit, proving to be just as much at ease with a simpler rock beat as with the typical metal blastbeats. The whole band is tight and moves as one cohesive unit, doing justice to the songs that they've written.
Sadly, there is one aspect of this album that is fairly disappointing: The horns. It feels like these guys wanted to toss some horns into this album because "jazz influence! horns!", but they clearly didn't have their heart in it. Dust is the first instance of horns on the album, and it's a pretty good example of what's to come: simple horn parts, mixed fairly far back into the mix. When an alto sax is introduced during the neat but slightly messy interlude Hyperventilation, it may get your hopes up. Sadly, the alto part in the following song, Die Laughing, is woefully uninspired and far enough into the back of the mix that you might very well not notice that it's there.
The one exception to this is an excellent and very much not hidden in the back of the mix alto solo during the song Dead Gallery. This almost makes it all the more sad to me: Wayd, you guys proved that you could do it! The sax in Dead Gallery is really cool and well done! Why did you hide the horns on the rest of the tracks so much? Did you think "oh, we could make this really cool, but instead let's not, to piss oksokol off." Is that what you did?! I think it is!
Regardless, this is a very solid album. Wayd incorporate some great elements into their death metal sound that lots of bands could learn from; namely, the ability to chill out and some harmonies that extend beyond the basic power chord. In addition, each member of the band holds his own weight, and as a result the group is tight throughout the album. I wish they'd learn to stop hiding the horns in the songs like that one deformed son you'd keep hidden in the shed out back - but that's a small detail. Overall, this is a great album and I highly recommend that you check it out.
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