Question for Pro-Pain: In the entire history of rock music, when has the cover-album concept ever really worked? GNR’s The Spaghetti Incident? RATM’s Renegades? Pat Boone’s In a Metal Mood? Make your arguments if you must, but cover albums are never essential entries in even the best band’s catalog. So what inspired the New York metal quartet to issue this yawn-inducing batch of Slayer and Celtic Frost songs? Besides the obvious answer (money), Pro-Pain has already done live and best-of albums, so it was either Christmas songs or cover tunes. In the liner notes, bassist and vocalist Gary Meskil asserts that Run was compiled at the behest of fans. In that case, it should’ve been an online freebie, because otherwise it bilks the very audience Meskil claims to be appeasing. Moreover, does anyone — including the members of Pro-Pain — really believe that these songs are better or in any way more interesting than the originals? Pro-Pain’s approach is too one-dimensional to be effective across even this narrow range of tunes. Meskil’s guttural vocals fare best when he can be as growly as he wants to be (Motörhead’s “Iron Fist”), but Pro-Pain fails to transcend the originals and sounds — at best — like a very polished cover band.

Categories: Music