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M.O.D - 2003 The Rebel You Love To Hate



M.O.D. - THE REBEL YOU LOVE TO HATE (2003, NUCLEAR BLAST)
Billy Milano - vocals, bass
Joe Affe - guitars
Paul Crook - guitars
Danny Burkhardt - drums


Background
The last time the world heard from Billy Milano's M.O.D. (Method Of Destruction) was back in 1996 with the positively dire 'Dictated Aggression', an album which suggested the end of the band, thanks to recycled riffs and ideas, none of which matched seminal efforts like 1987's 'U.S.A. For M.O.D.' or 1994's 'DeEvolution'. Following this human man mountain Milano concentrated on the reformed S.O.D. (Stormtroopers Of Death) with comrades Scott Ian, Charlie Benante (both Anthrax) and Dan Lilker (Nuclear Assault, Brutal Truth) who duly released the ill advised 'Speak Of The Devil' in 1999. After a bitter falling out with Ian, Milano decided to reform his dormant outfit, with new members Affe, Burkhardt and ex Anthrax man Crook. Musically and lyrically nothings changed, Milano opting to satirize current events in music and politics, to a backdrop of thrash meets hardcore, with unfortunately little of the sting of the late 80's early 90's.

The Songs
'Wigga' deals with Milan's anger for white people pretending to be black, a subject the man feels strongly on based on past interviews. Suitably it's a rap-metal workout with Milano barking out lyrics like 'white dudes cant jump or dance' for example. An enjoyable little romp that manages to remain heavy despite being a parody. The title track is Milano's ode to himself and his reputation as an untamable loudmouth. Musically it differs little from what Milano was offering back in 1992 with 'Rhythm Of Fear', a heavy mixture of rap and hardcore, with Milano's overpowering vocals. 'Makin' Friends Is Fun' is basic metal, staunch riffing and some thrashier sections, it's subject matter regarding the good old USA's tendency to make enemies of it's own people (read immigrants). Continuing the scathing musical trends is 'De Men Of Stein', a heavy dirge concerning neo-fascism in the techno scene, an obvious nod towards Rammstein. More relevant is 'Rage Against The Mac Machine', yet another tirade (Billy's an angry man), this time concerning the hypocrisy of Rage Against The Machine who according to Billy contradict themselves and their political beliefs, because they rake in the cash from large record companies. At least Milano has believable venom in his voice, with a background of RATM type noise. Milano's well-known love of Kiss features in 'Get Ready', a paean to Kiss' 1975-76 sound. If Milano wanted to attack someone, he could have ripped Gene Simmons and his constant merchandising nonsense. 'Ass-Ghanistan', self-explanatory surely....'He's Dead Jim' appeared many moons ago on a M.O.D. compilation in 1994. I'm not sure as to its re-recording here, but it remains an amusing Star Trek take off.

In Summary
At only eight songs (disregarding radio edits of tracks 1, 2 and 5), this seems short opposed to the mammoth efforts of yesteryear, even if some tracks were mere seconds long. Milano still has the anger which charecterises M.O.D., even if the music isn't as fast or crazed as before. The comedy element is alive and well, especially Milano's imitation of other artists, something he's honed since his debut in 1985 with S.O.D. It's a safe bet this album will do respectably, thanks to Milano's considerable history, with M.O.D. enjoying a niche in the pantheon of the late 80's thrash scene. One thing is clear, it's an improvement over 'Dictated Aggression'. Maybe the man just needed time to think..

Track Listing:
01 Wigga
02 The Rebel You Love To Hate
03 Makin' Friends Is Fun
04 De Men Of Stein
05 Rage Against The Mac Machine
06 Get Ready
07 Ass-Ghanistan
08 He's Dead Jim
09 Get Ready (Almost Live Kinda)
10 Rebel (808)

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