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Meshuggah - Nothing CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.57 | 140 ratings

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The Pessimist
Prog Reviewer
2 stars Of all the Meshuggah albums (bar Contradictions Collapse) this is probably the one I touch upon the least. I don't dislike it, but I think it's just kind of weak by Meshuggah's amazing standards. Don't get me wrong, it has it's moments, but it has a few very major setbacks. For a start, it doesn't groove anywhere near as well as their other stuff. On Chaosphere we saw pretty much every song having a strong and certain headbanging riff within that used polymeters effectively to create a sycopated sense of motion that pretty much overwhelms the listener. Nothing has almost none of that. It could be because it's a tad slower than all their previous albums, but if we go forward in time to Catch 33 we can find that it is the same speed as Nothing but laiden to death with groovy syncopated riffs. I just feel their heart wasn't really in this one in that department, and that's all there is to it.

The second setback on this album is how none of the songs really set themselves apart, for example: when I'm listening to the opening of Perpetual Black Second in my own head, I'm thinking that the same riff could be used in any other song on the album. This is true to me, despite being at different tempos. In fact the only song that stands out as different to me is Spasm because of Haake's little vocal part, but then again bringing something new to the album doesn't necessarily bring anything new to Meshuggah, and this sort of thing can be found in a purer (and in my opinion better) form in the songs Exquisite Machinery Of Torture and Sublevels from previous albums.

My final beef with this album is how repetitive and uninventive the riffs are. Once again, if you've heard one song you've pretty much heard them all. The only thing different here is a complete change in mood, which I salute them for, but then again on albums like Destroy Erase Improve and Obzen we had a change in mood with every song. The riffs in almost every single album they have done stick out somehow, examples for me would be the ending of New Millenium Cyanide Christ, the whole of Bleed, Combustion and and Soul Burn and finally the bridge section riffs in In Death - Is Death. But here all the riffs are pretty much in the same manner throughout.

Don't get me wrong, this is not a BAD effort as such. It's just... well, boring. I can't listen to the whole thing from beginning to end because it just wears me down with it's tedium. For this reason I can't give it anyhigher than 3 stars but i can't give it a 1 because it's obviously had a lot of work done to it. Just... the wrong kind of work. This isn't the Meshuggah I love here, their souls just weren't in it this time. So it's a 2 stars exactly from me.

The Pessimist | 2/5 |


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