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Articles Home » 2015 Articles » U.D.O - 2015 Decadent
U.D.O - 2015 Decadent

ALBUM: Decadent
LABEL: AFM Records
YEAR: 2015


LINEUP: Udo Dirkschenider - vocals * Andrey Smirnov - guitar * Kasperi Heikkenen - guitar * Fitty Weinhold - bass * Francesco Jovino - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Speeder * 02 Decadent * 03 House Of Fake * 04 Mystery * 05 Pain * 06 Secrets In Paradise * 07 Meaning Of Life * 08 Breathless * 09 Under Your Skin * 10 Untouchable * 11 Rebels Of The Night * 12 Words In Flame



As predictable as a failed Liverpool title bid, every two years on the dot you're guaranteed a new U.D.O. album. That statement probably seems negative given the Liverpool comparison and in a way it's meant to be. Go back through the reviews of previous albums by the former Accept man and you can see a trend, not just of the two year aspect, but of the increasing boredom and staleness of each release. Don't get me wrong, Udo himself is a bona fide metal legend, but when I saw the release of this album and another 14 tracks to wade through it just made me wonder who still lives and dies for this? Believe it or not this is the 15th U.D.O. album dating back to 1987, with the newer material not even coming close to the earlier albums, which were true classics. Like Accept, Udo sounds worn out, the whole premise becoming increasingly tired and beyond formulaic. Even the cover reminds me of some second division thrash album from the late 80's, when every band seemed concerned with social inequality and 'fat cats' like the guy on the cover taking advantage of the little man.

The Songs
Reading my review of 2013's 'Steelhammer' I noticed I was positive about it, before I remembered I haven't listened to it since, which is par for the course for most albums these days. When contemplating reviewing 'Decadent' the prospect of trying to describe 14 songs was a descent into insanity I was not prepared to take, so really all that's required is a sweeping generalization of a few songs. I say that because I didn't even need to listen to this to know the direction it would take; a few fast tracks, some mid-paced fare, a couple of ballads.. of course this is the album to a tee, much like everything Udo's done since 1999 or so. 'Speeder' sounds like a title for something fast, but it's a routine workout, sounding like mid 90's Accept and in all seriousness much more tangible than the disaster that was Accept's 'Blind Rage.' The most notable aspect of the title track is the video, where Udo throws in real life footage of various atrocities committed by megalomaniacs and tyrants worldwide, disguising an ordinary, chugging track with a chorus you've heard dozens of times in various shades by different incarnations of the band. Most of the song titles leave me cold alone, 'Secrets In Paradise', 'Breathless', 'Let Me Out', 'Mystery'.. you get the idea. It sounds more like an AOR album based on those. 'Rebels Of The Night' sounds tantalizing and it's definitely heavy, with Udo sounding like the last 30 years never happened. 'Under Your Skin' is the obligatory thrasher, while 'Words In Flame' is the forced ballad with acoustic and orchestral shades. It's seven minutes and something Udo has to do on every album. It's funny because while the album seems heavy on the surface, it's just redundant to me as a whole. There's nothing differentiating any U.D.O. album from the last. If he limited it to 9 tracks it might seem more agreeable, but this 14 track nonsense is too much to sit through in this day and age.

In Summary
While this may seem scathing, it's just a reflection of metal fatigue perhaps. Maybe if I was 21 I'd be more fanatical in my response, but having heard Udo plunder this kind of stuff over and over and with such frequency you'd think he'd scale it back a bit. Understandably he's getting up there now and trying to make a living like anyone else, but where's the excitement gone? The notion that he isn't just going through the motions? I could have cut and pasted my review for 2011's forgotten 'Rev-Raptor' and it would have done the job here. All this did was make me go back and listen to 'Mean Machine' or 'Timebomb' from Udo's solo heyday, which inevitably make this look like the tired escapade it is.

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#1 | gdazegod on February 10 2015 12:54:13
I'll give you this Alun. your loyalty to this bloke is unwavering..
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