V For Violence isn’t one of those alphabet who done it books. And this time the “V” does stand for violence and not Vengeance. For those of you who I may have lost with the first couple of sentences fear not because V For Violence is an industrial metal band from Helsinki,Finland. The Book of V is their newest effort following their 2009 debut titled The Cult of V and will be out on the 28th of this month through Inverse Records. Their second effort took some time to complete because they “wanted to take the next step in song writing and pay more attention to details”, according to the bands vocalist Jarkko.
With this being their second release they certainly did pay more attention to songwriting as well as the details. The Book of V tells stories of heart break as well as just straight up hard rocking headbangers that are just meant to be there for your head banging pleasures.
With the time they took away from the studio they developed a better sense of how to make you feel certain things while listening to the music. Some of the tracks are melancholic and make you feel like you are in a state of sadness while others make you feel like you just want to break shit over the head of your worst enemy. The balance between the vicious and the more reserved melancholy songs serves the band and the album well as it gives the songs more diversity and more of a chance for the listener to explore what this band actually has to offer.
With the subject matter that V For Violence writes about the music needs to match the lyrics of course and create that certain atmosphere that the specific song calls for. V For Violence does a good job of mixing your emotions into a blender and pureeing them until you really don’t know what to feel anymore. The blender in this case is their music and the musicianship that they bring to the table.
Most of the songs on here have crunching guitars, catchy hooks, and plenty of angry yelling. But there are the songs on here as well that play as sort of like ballads. And even though those songs are slower and more melancholic they don’t lose their edge that the other more faster and headbanging tunes have. Some of the songs have a radio friendly presence about them as well, maybe because the song “The Downfall Part II: Armourageddon” has already been on Finnish radio. Other than that song though, there are songs on here that have that aggression to them but could be on the radio as well.
The whole aggressive style is present throughout the album even with the more ballad like songs. V For Violence brings this forth with their style of play. While there doesn’t have to be any crazy shrieking guitar solos, or any blast beats that just sound inhuman, V For Violence ladles catchy riff after catchy riff, lyrics that are memorable and vocals that are both soothing and harsh. The lead singer clean sings for the most part, but he has a certain hypnotic tone to his voice that draws you in deeper into the music, but he can also growl on command when the song calls for it as well.
Behind the catchy riffs and the hypnotic vocals V For Violence does have samples of pianos, barrels and other things to mix into the music, otherwise they wouldn’t be industrial. The sounds are incorporated well never overshadowing the other instruments or making the songs sound too cluttered with noise and nothing else.
The fine balance between everything that is going on in this record makes for a sound that is diverse. Fueled by aggression and accompanied along the way by heartbreak, The Book of V is an interesting book indeed. V For Violence can make you want to trash the place as well as make you feel like you need to go sulk in a corner. Overall The Book of V is a great sophomore effort from these Finnish industrial metal lads, and well worth the listen.