God Forbid - Determination


Not blessed, or merciful
Apr 11, 2001
Sarf Lundin, Innit
God Forbid - Determination
Century Media - 2001
By Rodrigo


God Forbid is one of the newest bands that have signed to Century Media and Determination marks their debut release with the label. The easiest way to describe God Forbid musically is to call them a melodic trash band. But that term only begins to scratch the surface because God Forbid has elements of hardcore and they also show shades of technicality. God Forbid has been able to combine all these elements to make a good but not spectacular album.

The first thing that jumped out at me was the singing of Byron Davis. His style is part hardcore and part death metal. He sings with a lot of energy and anger that fits the music really well. I swear that at times he sounds like Chuck Shuldiner of Death and Control Denied. The other strength of the band is the guitar playing of the Coyle brothers, Dallas and Doc. They do a great job of playing trashy and crushing riffs in songs like "Wicked" and "Go Your Own Way". But they can also have no problems with belting out some more melodic riffs like in "Divide My Destiny", which happens to be my favorite song of the album.

"Divide My Destiny" is a simpler and catchier song than some of the other songs in Determination but by no means does that make it bad. They have managed to combine the aggressive elements and the melodic elements to perfection. The whole band is in perfect form, from the excellent guitar playing of Dallas and Doc to the strong bass and drum playing of both John Outcalt and Corey Pierce. The aggressive singing of Byron ties it all together and in the end you get a song where the band really shows what it can really do.

Unfortunately, not all the songs of the album are as good as "Divide My Destiny". There are some good songs like "Network" with its technical elements and the instrumental "God’s Last Gift" that features great guitar solos. But most of the other songs did not hold my attention that much. I am not a big fan of hardcore and I feel that God Forbid contains many elements of that genre from making me to really enjoy the album. Plus, there has been a lot of talk about God Forbid being very similar to bands like In Flames but I do not hear it that much. Just because there are melodic elements in the music it does not mean that you have the next In Flames or At the Gates.

Don’t get me wrong Determination is not a bad album but except for some songs it is not album that I really enjoyed. If you like this sort of music then by all means this album is probably for you but don’t expect to be blown away by it.
I dunno...when I saw these guys opening for Cradle of Filth and Nile last year they struck me as being a very awkward mixture of In Flames and Biohazard. They didn't seem to have their style very defined yet--good musicians, but they didn't really do it for me. Cool that black folks are getting back into heavy music, though, considering we have them to thank for rock n' roll in the first place.