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Voivod - Nothingface CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

4.24 | 367 ratings

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4 stars Continuing their progressive tendencies, Voivod delivers their most personal, elaborated and most widely acknowledged achievement ever with Nothingface. However, the emphasis on technicalities and production make it a very distant album, lacking the direct emotional appeal as well as the rocking song writing and spontaneity of the two preceding albums.

The album starts most impressing with the dramatic space prog intro of The Unknown Knows, what follows is pure guitar bliss. The production is perfect this time and balances all instruments perfectly. As a song though, this never clicked with me, it's sought-after and stops rather abruptly just when it's really getting interesting. The entire album boast impressive musicianship and amounts of originality that are simply unfair when compared to most other bands, but the songs sound studied, sterile and lack vigour and naturalness. Especially 'Snake' disappoints me. He let go of the punk flavours of his voice but does not have enough melodic qualities to compensate for it. The previous album had a better balance there.

Given my quibbles with the compositions, it's no surprise that this album is at its most convincing when they leave the songwriting to someone else. It's a bit cynical maybe but the quality difference of the Pink Floyd classic Astronomy Domine with any other song on the album is phenomenal. Here they can hang their unique sound and daft playing on a really accomplished piece of music and the result is phenomenal. It's not better then PF's Umma Gumma version but it's a very fine metalized version.

Nothingface is Voivod's acclaimed masterpiece and an essential album. However, you might not be the only one out there to be disappointed with its detached manner, sterility or far-fetched song writing. If such would be the case, don't discard the band too soon, you still might find much to enjoy in the two powerful albums that preceded or in the two more easily flowing albums that followed. 3.5 stars

Bonnek | 4/5 |


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