Album Reviews

Right Stripped – Absence Of Humanity

Released By : Self Released

Genre : Modern Rock



Joe Kiesgen – Vocals

Josh Carney – Guitar, Vocals

Tim Diephouse – Drums

Aaron Lanning – Bass


1. Phoenix

2. Silence The Hatred

3. Absence Of Humanity

4. Darkest Hour

5. Vindicator

6. Our Ways

7. The Awakening

8. Forcing Isolation

9. Requim

10. Of Saints And Martyrs

11. Demon Eyes

12. Silence The Hatred Pt. 2

13. Soul Aflame

A pleasant surprise awaited me when I got home from my day job this afternoon. Having CD’s sent from all around the globe sitting and waiting for me to arrive is nothing out of the ordinary, but rarely do I receive something from overseas in an express post envelope. At first I thought to myself “what’s the big rush?”, but I decided to return the favor by listening to it almost right away. I’m glad I did too as I found a completely enjoyable album that will appeal to a wide mass of people, from a band that seem to have everything in place for the next step up the ladder.

RIGHT STRIPPED have only been around since 2004 and previous to this new effort ABSENCE OF HUMANITY, released two other full length albums and spent time playing live from one end of Michigan to the other, all the while crafting their unique sound that comprises of a modern radio rock backbone, layered with some progressive metal, all the while nodding graciously toward the heavier side of rock and thrash metal of the late eighties to early nineties. As a matter of fact I would be very interested to see what bands each member of RIGHT STRIPPED are influenced by, as I’m sure the answers would be very varied. The fact that the guys also work as a rock covers band may also have something to do with the abundance of different influences. Imagine if you will if the members of DISTURBED, PANTERA and CREED got together and started a Power Metal tribute band, then you will be some ways to imagining what ABSENCE OF HUMANITY holds in store.

I’m not going to say that this is the best thing I’ve ever heard, because that would be far from the truth, but in fact, a vast majority of the album impressed me enough to go in the ‘keeper’ pile for my personal collection. The unique style is going to be a big selling point for this band, but there are a few little things they need to do before trying to conquer the globe. The main thing is that there is a female back-up vocalist in the chorus of a few songs that just has to go, she is not needed and interrupts the flow of the songs too much. The other thing they could do help themselves is shorten a few of the songs down a little bit as a few of them get a bit bland and repetitive toward the end. Apart from that though, the backbone of the band is strong, the guitars flow seamlessly from modern rock detuned riffs, to power metal chugs and speedy solos without sounding out of place and vocalist Joe Kiesgen has a very impressive higher register that really takes these tunes skyward.

Speaking of the tunes, there are a few real highlights starting with DARKEST HOUR that has verse riffs that sound like a cross between WALK from PANTERA and THE BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE from MARYLIN MANSON and a great lyric that is really sung with pure passion. VINDICATION is so close to being another highlight with it’s mixture of DISTURBED and a bit of SYSTEM OF A DOWN, but is let down by the unwelcome female backup vocals. THE AWAKENING is sort of the ballad of the album and is a bit like a slightly heavier version of a DAUGHTRY tune. DEMON EYES is the most modern metal sounding tune on the album has a section that slightly borrows from Metalcore with some awesome beatdowns.

If modern rock is your thing, but you’re getting a little tired of the somewhat stale nature of the genre, RIGHT STRIPPED may just be the band you need, surely the future is bright for this group of talented individuals.

Written By ZeeZee

Rating : 8/10

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