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During the mid 90s there was an abundance of groove metal, with new bands popping up everywhere coupled with some old thrash heroes changing their sound to appeal to fans of this new movement. This music sucked. While Pantera did a reasonably good job of it, the other bands were just plain bad. Machine Head's debut did a lot to help solidify this movement, and unsurprisingly it, like nearly all of the stuff that came out of the genre, isn't very good. Machine Head's sound is similar to that of other groove bands, consisting of downtuned, simplistic grooves that don't really go anywhere or change at all.
There are some good songs on here however. Opener 'Davidian' is the best song they ever did. Although it starts off with a slow paced intro it speeds up into a more moderate pace with a pretty good riff coming in and taking over. Add in an above average solo and this song turns out quite well. 'Blood for Blood' has another boring intro full of random guitar squeals and noises before it speeds up into a good, heavy riff. Although sounding a bit rushed at time, the song is pretty catchy and Flynn's vocals don't sound nearly as pathetic as they normally would. Finally, 'A Thousand Lies' is boring in the verses but it really picks up in the chorus with a nice galloping riff, which saves it from the mediocrity of the rest of the album.
The other songs on here are simply not worth hearing. The riffs are unoriginal and sleep inducing and a lot of the songs seem to drag on and on and on. Not really a good thing considering the songs average out at around five minutes. From the pointless interlude 'Real Eyes, Realize, Real Lies ' which consists of a stupid riff with random noises over the top to the grunge inspired 'I'm Your God Now' which has soft singing in the verses and some predictable groove riffing in the choruses, a lot of this stuff is just pointless and boring. And then there are Flynn's vocals. While I can usually tolerate sub standard vocals the ones on here just piss me off. For example, the song 'Davidian' is almost ruined by the overly loud vocals which are supposed to sound pissed off but are laughable. The previously mentioned 'I'm Your God Now' has him trying to imitate Kurt Cobain in parts, while 'Old' has some cringe worthy moments in the chorus. The album is over produced and polished to the point of absurdity, and the vocals and drums are pulled forward in the mix for some reason.
What really pisses me off though is that despite the blatantly groove riffing, the slowed down pace and the over polished production some people still believe that this shit is thrash. I wasn't expecting a thrash album when I got it, just a solid groove one which didn't overuse it to the point of stupidity. If they put the three good songs on an EP it would be quite good, but alas this is not the case. If you really like groove metal or are one of the aforementioned idiots who don't know what thrash is then you'll probably enjoy this, otherwise just stay away from this and listen to some Vio-lence or something (bet you didn't see that coming).