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Meshuggah's peak performance - 89%

panteramdeth, April 6th, 2004

This is the first Meshuggah album that I owned, and the album that would eventually get me into melodic death metal. As much as I hate Chaosphere and Nothing, this is an excellent album. It's inventive, unique, and thrashy, all at the same time. And in fact, I don't see how it would be possible to not headbang and mosh to this album.

"Future Breed Machine" greets us first with a very futuristic sound to it with a death alarm sounding throughout. Tomas Haake's drumming is some of the best to come out of the country of Sweden, where the band also happens to hail from. Plus, the rhythm guitar work and riffs are very heavy as well. Vocals are shouty on all tracks, as the vocalist sounds a little like Max Cavalera of Sepultura. "Beneath" is the next track, and starts out with sharp lead guitar work at its onset, before working into a heavier riff pattern. Once again, the drumming is out of control, but very good at the same time. "Soul Burn" has a nice guitar solo from about the 2:45 to the 3:38 mark, and also features some excellent riffing. "Transfixion" is more thrashy and less groovy than the songs on either side of it, and once again, there are some brutally heavy riffs and solid lead guitar work. The drumming on "Transfixion" and "Vanished" has to be seen to be believed, it's amazing the eye to detail that Haake shows to his work.

"Acrid Placidity" is a fairly mellow-sounding instrumental, highlighted by the lead guitar work. "Inside What's Within Behind" has a pulsing rhythm in the beginning, and then works into those crazy off-beat drum rhythms that have defined Meshuggah's career. Then, at about the 2:35 mark, a softer, yet spooky sounding interlude works in, before ending on a heavy note. "Terminal Illusions" is full of stop-and-go riffs and thrash-style drums, after you get done headbanging to this song, your head will feel like it's ready to fall off. "Suffer In Truth" is the next track, is the most cohesive of the songs found here, with not as much staccato being used as on the other tracks here. Instead, it is a groove-based track, as the rhythm here is fairly steady. "Sublevels" is softer, but ends on a strong note, with a good guitar solo at the 1:52 - 2:40 mark.

If you're into death, melodic death, or industrial metal, this is another can't miss album. If you're looking to get someting from Meshuggah, DEI is the best place to start.