Live albums are always a dangerous affair, many will question releasing one at all, why not a proper studio album, is it a stop gap, a lack of interest or commitment from band or label? Quite often it's more because live albums simply don't sound very good, the quality is shoddy, the playing lax and the whole atmosphere is lost when listening on your home stereo. Fortunately for a hardcore-punk / Metal-ish band like Mammal with an infamously high quality live show, they're usually so damn tight and technically skilled that at least two of the concerns voiced are met, the sound quality is better than some studio based recordings, whoever captured the performance deserves congratulations. The audience sounds large-ish and seems to be enjoying themselves, screaming between and during songs, however some of the inter song introductions from front man Ezekiel Ox should have possibly been left out, being cringely cheesy in places, e.g. 'Sometimes you look around yourself and all is not to your liking, Mammal does this to√Æ, said in a strong Australian accent loses some of it's bite when heard on record, that live, in the midst of a sweaty, raucous show would have been an awesome call to arms.The album also comes with a live DVD which, whilst the technical quality of the video doesn't match the quality of the live audio, goes some way to improving the atmosphere, actually seeing limbs flailing around on and off stage giving a little more atmosphere, though a lingering taste of cheese does unfortunately still hang slightly in the air, which is often a potential problem with a band that takes themselves seriously, it may not always come off that way post event.As a release, 'Vol2 Systematic / Automatic' is a gamble, will it connect with their fan base as the band's press realise so confidently claims? Are fans willing to buy something that they attended anyway, or will they consider it a somewhat flagrant attempt to make money out of them? Mammal like breaking rules, doing things their own way and taking a chance, so from their perspective, it will be a gamble worth taking.
Published in Inpress