PHESP Review – new tunez
Loud, heavy, and anti-political.. with distorted guitars, brain melting riffs and in your face lyrics is how we like it. This week ESPV reviews two albums for yall to get busy with from Machine Head and Serj Tankian.
(The Blackening, by Machine Head, 2007)
The masters of metal return after a less then inspiring few years of ‘not bad’ albums with this ass kicking release for 2007.
It’s been a long road for Machine Head (MH) in the last 14yrs. Most metal fans will no doubt remember the early MH albums that set the band off including Burn My Eyes and The Burning Red which were friiiiigin ‘poo my pants’ amazing. In 2001 however, Supercharger was quoted as the band’s ‘worst effort yet’ and 2004’s Through the Ashes of Empires saw little improvement. Some claimed the band was resting on their fame and no longer striving to make a difference in the metal scene. Thankfully, The Blackening is impressive to say the least and has been classed as the band’s ‘best release sine 1994’ by various metal buffs.
Returning once again to the iconic sound that first made them, the album offers no less the heavy ass kicking, non-stop, mental metal MH are known for, together with a little musical experimentation from their last four albums. It seems the band has began to care less about what record labels and critics think and more about what inspires them to create the true sound of the dark metal that they love.
This album is a sure to be a pleaser for MH fans with roaring vocals, relentless double bass drum and classic MH distorted stings mixed in a fast paced aggressive style.. certainly not easy-listening, conventional or standard rock/metal.
This album is MH not giving a fuck and playing hard and loud. I would even go as far to say that, in terms of heaviness and keeping to their original sound, they poo on Fear Factory.. (if your deeply offended by that last comment please forward all hate-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org).
(Elect the Dead, by Serj Tankian, 2007)
System of a Down’s (SOAD) front man Serj Tankian busts into the scene with his debut solo album Elect the Dead. Although Serj’s album differs to Machine Head’s latest release it is certainly not to be put down. Whilst still encompassing his renowned sound and style from SOAD, Serj also offers dark emotion, anti-political insight and an off-the-wall tripped out sound that is different to say the least when compared to other experimental/alternative-metal bands.
Tracks on Elect the Dead are more melodic, chorusy, catchy and cohesive in style with a rich deep sound which, together with Serj’s voice and bizarre lyrics make the album creative and inspiring without a doubt, and still highly satisfying with nice crunchy heavy sections in almost every tune.. good to see some artists don’t turn into pussies when releasing a solo album.
Sounding dark and tender one moment and insanely possessed and loud the next, this album is full of nice surprises. For those of you looking for a heavy, but not Machine Head heavy album, that stands out amongst the sea of ‘try-hard wana-be metal’ bands.. this album is definitely worth a buy.. or a download, which ever you believe in.
(Note to readers: Whilst ESPV does not encourage or condone stealing in any sense, we realize that in today’s society most entertainment products on the market are seriously over priced in order to guarantee certain labels and multinational organizations large profits which, don’t go back into improving relationship marketing, product quality or value, and only a laughable percentage goes to the artists. Therefore, we understand that after reading such reviews on the ESPVblog, many of you may feel inclined to download these albums for free and.. why the fuck not, right? Enjoy!)
Random Serj Tankian info:
Serj was born in Beirut, Lebanon in 1967 and grew us in the US. Today he is not only a successful artist but also a strong willed activist and co-founder of the non-for-profit organization Axis of Justice (together with Rage Against the Machine’s Tom Morello) (check out axisofjustice.com).
In 2001, Serj wrote the controversial essay Understanding Oil, two days after the World Trade Centre attacks, which some (narrow minded) people say was an attempt to justify how/why the attacks had occurred which, record label Sony later removed from the System of a Down website claiming the essay was ‘unfounded’. Other (open minded free thinking) people have noted that Tankian's essay, which also called the 9/11 attacks ‘brutal’, explicitly stated the need to understand the motivations of terrorists, and had simply explained how the West’s struggle for oil and power had spilled into their own backyard… check out more at: serjtankian.com.