Having released one of the best albums of 2002 in the shape of their debut, "Velvet Noise", Denmark's RAUNCHY had their work cut out for them while working on the material for its follow-up. The group, who were widely described as a potent mixture of STRAPPING YOUNG LAD, FEAR FACTORY and MACHINE HEAD, have managed to expand upon their earlier sound and incorporate additional influences to come up with what is a more original — and ultimately more impressive — sophomore offering.Although RAUNCHY have largely remained true to the riff-heavy approach that made their debut such a remarkable slab of extreme metal heaviness, they have clearly stepped up their songwriting a notch, with the material on the new album consistently coming across as catchier and more unique than anything found on its predecessor. Whether exploring the dance/groove-metal vibe of "Watch Out" or churning out the kind of Swedish melo-death riffing that would make SOILWORK and IN FLAMES proud ("Nine – Five"), RAUNCHY have produced a CD that is crushingly heavy yet surprisingly tuneful — oftentimes within the framework of a single track. Recorded and mixed, once again, by Danish producer Jacob Hansen (INVOCATOR) at his Hansen Studios, "Confusion Bay" takes the aforementioned influences and whips them up into something altogether more fresh sounding, with each vocal hook embedding itself into the listener's brain on the first pass-through. The group's terrible name aside, RAUNCHY remain Denmark's best-kept "secret" — a band whose recorded accomplishments eclipse the level of recognition afforded them by the metal media and fans thus far. With "Confusion Bay", this should most certainly change — and in a big way.
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