Premonitions Of War - Left In Kowloon

12 songs
26:13 minutes
***** **


Six minutes into the album, and I noticed that the sixth song was about to start. Premonitions Of War from the USA are not into long structures, that's for sure. Their style is commonly described as metalcore these days, but I would see it rather as a combination of aggressive death metal and grindcore, enhanced by the psychotic spice of hysterical hardcore. Of the twelve songs, all but the two in the middle are shorter than three minutes, only Black Den and Cables Hum Overhead transcend the five-minutes limit. Where the former works out great, starting like a regular POW song before dissolving into a sick sludgy part, the latter is an out-of-place post industrial soundscape that would have fit better with the likes of Halo and Godflesh.

Apart from that, it's most of the time full speed ahead, with the occasional slower (but never melodic) part in between. Although POW claim not to be a metal band (among other reasons because they are short-haired), they are touring a lot with death metal bands and their new album Left In Kowloon has been produced by Eric Rutan (Morbid Angel, Hate Eternal), who did a great job by emphasising the omnipresent brutality and hopelessness as perfect as possible.

This music is great whenever the songs are short and concise, and even one of the longer songs is ok for a break somewhere in the middle of the CD, but that still leaves us with a rather short album. Unlike many Swedish grind bands who add a couple more tracks (Nasum, Gadget) to achieve a decent running time, POW decided to go a more minimalist way. The quality is exceptional here, but sometimes quantity is a factor too.

Back to Reviews