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Possibly the best Voivod album since Outer Limits - 91%

_MyNameIsShotgun_, September 23rd, 2018
Written based on this version: 2018, Digital, Century Media Records (Deluxe edition)

I've been looking forward to this release ever since I discovered Voivod through their early masterpieces. I was really jazzed when Century Media Records released the videos for Obsolete Beings, Iconspiricy and Always Moving earlier this year. Finally, I can talk about the album as a whole as it deserves.

First of all, let's discuss our newest member to the band, Rocky, or professionally known as Dominique Laroche. He has immense shoes to fill, especially considering this is his first full album with Voivod. Sadly, Blacky parted with the band after Target Earth, but Rocky does a fantastic job on bass here. Huge props to him. Also I'd like to mention Chewy, or Dan Mongrain. This is his second album with Voivod and he also has immense shoes to fill for the late Piggy (RIP). He blows all expectations out of the water. His riffs and solos are amazing and perfectly fit Voivod's and Piggy's style.

Snake, Jesus Christ, absolutely kicks ass on this record. He looks pretty rough and shows his age, but he still sounds fantastic. In the live version of Voivod on this album, he says, "I'm gonna sing till my last breath! Voivod is a family, we got to stick together like one..." Almost even better than his voice are his lyrics. He's talked about this album being a concept about a huge discovery that changes Earth for the future and how it affects people. So fucking cool, reminds me of Dimension Hatross. One of my favorite lyrics is the chorus on Obsolete Beings,

"Out of function, no longer used
And your model discontinued
Signs of the time are starting to show
So there you are, stacked on the shelf, you'll go!
There you are, smashed to pieces, you'll blow!
There you are... No more!"

Away does as he has always done, fill in the gaps in with his drumming. His fills and tempo are on point, nothing extraordinary, but absolutely nothing to complain about. The cover art is also really cool; it's a product of his new crude, cartoony, line art style. I don't know if he's in charge of the videos for the singles, but if so, those are perfect too.

Another high point of the record is the production, it's definately not perfect, but is a lot better than most modern bands. It isn't sludgy, or downtuned; it's kind of even a bit thin. The bass and drums are a bit quiet compared to the guitars, vocals, and effects, but still audible. Overall, pretty respectable. One thing I'd like to mention as well are the effects, synths and strings. Yes, strings on a Voivod album. The synths are reminiscent of Dimension Hatross and Nothingface, for example the intro to Obsolete Beings could have been lifted straight from Experiment. A few string sections appear here as well, a cool dramatic interlude similar to 2001 Space Oddessy in the middle of Iconspiricy and the fadeout on Sonic Mycelium.

Speaking of Sonic Mycelium, it's a really interesting song. It pretty much combines different parts of all the songs on the record. The intro is the last part of Obsolete Beings with the lyrics of Spherical Perspective; it's full of these types of mashups, and closes with a sprawling string section. Yet another point to cover here (my lord, this is a lot) is the pacing. Most of the songs on here are slower, almost like a poem being read or you're hearing the story from Snake himself. That being said, there are some faster songs (Obsolete Beings, Iconspiricy, Event Horizon, and Always Moving) and some faster sections in songs. The pacing fits the story and works well for a concept album such as this.

Hopefully, if you're reading this I haven't bored you to death, however this album certainly will not. All in all, The Wake is a shockingly good album for as long as Voivod have been around and I'll probably enjoy it well into the future.

To the Death! \m/