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The Dillinger Escape Plan - Miss Machine CD (album) cover


The Dillinger Escape Plan

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

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5 stars Well if you want to get introduced to DEP,better start with this one!With Miss machine the DEP continue what that they started with their first full length (Grind+Noise+ambient+Prog+Jazz).All songs here are complex,with many changes in riffs ,rythms,and of course with sections of Ambient mixed with noise or even Jazz,BUT at the same time are more catchy.Unretrofied ,for example can be called a "normal'' song close to industrial stuff,Setting fire to sleeping giants( title of the year!!)is a twisted version of rock&roll and generally most of the songs are less chaotic!Puciato has a more flexible voice ,which is clearly influenced by Mike Patton,giving a different aura to the songs.I don't know if this is just an idea of mine but i do think that the band with this album continues what faith no more started before 16 years with the real thing!So I suggest to all prog rock fans even if their are not familiar with this sound to give this band a try starting with this album;they will discover a whole new and fresh scene in rock music.
Report this review (#43574)
Posted Saturday, August 20, 2005 | Review Permalink
King of Loss
1 stars The Dillinger Escape Plan is one of the new wave of new American bands that pioneer in the department of "noisecore" or extremely Heavy Hardcore mixed in with Grindcore influences. Their first album Calculating Infinity showed a lot of light with their experimental measures put at extremely high calibur at an extremely high "volume". To simply put it, their music is immensely heavy and noisy.

This release however, has showed the commercial components of this band. The Dillinger Escape Plan has made in this album with a leap into the likes of Everytime I Die, Killswitch Engage, Lamb of God into the category of "Metalcore". This isn't a very good Metalcore album, even though The Dillinger Escape Plan has made a big choice to streamline their sound and attempt to capture a larger audience into their music. However the result is an awful mix between their older, heavier Grind-Death-Noisecore attack into just simply noisy. Some of the songs on this album are simply trash including the supposed good track of "Panasonic Youth".

Not recommended for fans of ANY genre.

Report this review (#57727)
Posted Thursday, November 24, 2005 | Review Permalink
3 stars Miss Machine is a mixed bag for me. New vocalist Greg Puciato is certainly capable of bringing former singer Dimitri's intensity to the table, and can also bring much more as he displays throughout the album. The opening track 'Panasonic Youth' brings us the same frenetic Dillinger we had become acquainted with on Calculating Infinity, and it does it well. The following track 'Sunshine The Werewolf' presents an amazing and epic-sounding track so early into the record, and really sets the standards high as far as expectations for the rest of the album. 'Highway Robbery' is where things take a turn for the less than impressive. It is impossible to ignore the parallels in Greg's vocals to Mike Patton. Instrumentally the track is great but the annoying chorus makes this one skip-worthy. Another influence made apparent in the album is 'Phone Home's Nine Inch Nails-sounding ambience, synthesizers, and Reznor-esque vocals, though this is a much more successful homage to their influences than 'Highway Robbery'.

The rest of the tracks are hit (in-the-face) or miss (by-a-mile). Songs like 'Setting Fire To Sleeping Giants', 'Unretrofied', and the latter-half of 'Baby's First Coffin' display an attempt at the more accessible which may not connect with old fans but will surely attract newcomers to the band, which can certainly be viewed as a good thing. This is balanced out by the face melting 'The Perfect Design', 'We Are The Storm' and 'Van Damsel'.

Miss Machine is certainly worth buying and listening to if you're a Dillinger Fan and even more so if you've never had a proper introduction to the band. This album makes sense concerning the evolution of a band like DEP as their blend of styles is more encompassing and their few stabs at a brighter limelight; which they deserve. Old fans should come into the album not expecting a Calculating Infinity part two and they will certainly leave satiated, if not amazed

Report this review (#60790)
Posted Monday, December 19, 2005 | Review Permalink
2 stars Here we have just noisy tech metal with horrible vocals like already on "Calculating Infinity" and the experimental part is very much in the minor. The musician's effort is quite okay and matches at least to some extent what I would recall as math metal. On the other hand I can't give it less than two stars since it's containing as well (to a very small part) some nice sections that would justify to call this an experimental or progressive metal record. But those ones are incredibly well hidden behind all the noise presented here. Definitely it's an album that would be highly admired by any youngster being deeply into aggressive and noisy death metal. Unfortunately (or fortunately) I'm out of that age since a long while!
Report this review (#82630)
Posted Tuesday, July 4, 2006 | Review Permalink
1 stars Aggressive and boring.

There are many many critics out there to death/extreme metal. They say it's just mindless, angst filled teens out of touch with reality. I typically laugh at the stubbornness of these individuals. Unfortunately, there's always records like this which are almost of no value to the listener, and help to serve this stereotype (although this is still better than other stuff out there), especially if you are around 40 years old.

It's aggressive, loud, complex, but ultimately it's completely unfulfilling. There's a big difference between this material and Meshuggah's material. The volume is almost always at a max here, there's little in terms of exploration and song development (what we start with we end with), and as others have so aptly put it, it's just noisy. This isn't to say this material isn't complex. It really is some very technical material, but it's ultimately out of touch with anyone who isn't filled with rage. A poor release and genuinely not a band I would look to for direction/guidance within the prog metal genre.

Report this review (#103066)
Posted Thursday, December 14, 2006 | Review Permalink
4 stars This album is agressive and intense. Controlled chaos abounds. The band does a good job of balancing agression with occasional hooks. Considering this mix, the songs are well-written. There are a lot of technically complicated sections. But unlike some bands (Ed Gein for instance), the chaos is followable, and balanced by sections of strange clean melodies and jazzy chords--showing that the guys do know their music theory. There's also some tasteful synth stuff here and there. Overall the album flows really well, and unlike some reviewers, I don't think there are any throw-away tracks on it. It's also pleasantly absent of sometimes-cheezy metal cliches--fantasy lyrics, galloping rhythms, big reverb on drums, drawn-out solos, etc--it's more hardcore than actual metal.

I've tried to listen to this album for years and never could get into it. It was too angry--most lyrics were about bad relationships, which I couldn't totally identify with. Then I found out my wife had been cheating on me and lying to me for over a year. All of a sudden, my emotions and my progressive tastes combined and this album immediately "clicked." Now, I totally "get" this album--and I consider it hard-to-access brilliance. There are other metal bands who are heavier, and lower/darker sounding--but this album contains as much energy and raw aggression as I've ever heard. If you don't have a lot of things to be angry about (especially relationship-wise), you probably won't enjoy this album, because I didn't. If you do, this is just what you need.

Report this review (#138981)
Posted Tuesday, September 18, 2007 | Review Permalink
2 stars i had very high hopes for this album, i thought the blend of jazz (which i heard NO jazz sounding material on this album) metal, and tempo changes would be really exciting and interesting.

I'm generally a fan of modern heavy metal (not necesarily prog metal either), but i really didn't like this album at all. Its so loud and ridiculous, there isn't anything (or any time) to enjoy a single song on the album. Only a few songs really have any recognizable melody above the ridiculous distortion and horrid vocals (and its a wonder the vocalist is even still able to speak after recording this album).

Setting Fire to Sleeping Giants, however, is a good song that balances a quick, steady sound with a frantic and melodic chorus rather effectively.

Every other song is a mesh of tempo changes that don't work, horrid vocals (and i listen to a lot of growly voiced metal bands), and uninspired tracks that do nothing for the listener but annoy

Report this review (#142810)
Posted Monday, October 8, 2007 | Review Permalink
5 stars These guys are brilliant. People are writing them off too quickly because of their sound. Sure, it is heavy, often atonal, and relentless. So why is it that Meshuggah is getting high scores and this group is not? This album has many more recognizable riffs, and even some melodies; the drum work is phenominal; the musicianship is undeniably recondite, etc. Along with Protest the Hero and Between the Buried and Me, these guys are in the upper echelon of Tech-Metal[core]. Listen to "Baby's First Coffin," and explain how it doesn't have at least your appreciation.
Report this review (#148220)
Posted Tuesday, October 30, 2007 | Review Permalink
5 stars How did this album ever get this low? It's surely not for everyone but it's absolutely a masterpiece if you open your mind and really listen to it. Though songs like Unretrofied etc. mix in a little bit of a poppy tendency which i don't prefer if you're into metal or have an open mind to extremity than you will be happy with this album, recommended to open minded people.
Report this review (#168750)
Posted Saturday, April 26, 2008 | Review Permalink
3 stars Ah, The Dillinger Escape Plan, tech metal pioneers with a twist.

Even though I am actually a fan of Tech-Metal and consider it to be the most original and creative aspect of metal on this side of the millennium(which perhaps doesn't say much), The Dillinger Escape Plan has never held any real interest to me.

Sure, their music is fast paced and energetic, sometimes bordering on greatness. But it seems to me like that this is how all their albums open and then they gradually recede into some sort of radio friendly post rock. Now this wouldn't be a problem had they some semblance of natural motion from the one to the other, but as it seems to me The Dillinger Escape Plan just completely embraces these two sides of their music, no matter how conflicting they might appear when presented like they are on their albums.

"Miss Machine" is their greatest album to date, it includes some of their most memorable songs(I consider Sunshine The Werewolf to be one of the best of this entire genre) but it gaits and stumbles so much between its influences and themes that it appears disjointed to me. Half a fantastic album, so to speak.

Extra point for being such an important addition to the genre and having the courage to release music this provokingly ambivalent.


Report this review (#252475)
Posted Tuesday, November 24, 2009 | Review Permalink
2 stars "Miss Machine," The Dillinger Escape Plan's pseudo-concept album about stalking, kidnapping, torture, rape and murder occupies an uncomfortable space in the band's discography, and with good reason. Having not yet abandoned the vicious havoc of "Calculating Infinity" but not quite moved into the full experimentation of "Ire Works," "Miss Machine" is an album that tries to have its cake and eat it too, and it is rarely, if ever, successful at doing so.

Atmosphere is the key thing that this album lacks: It's typically slamming away with all guns blazing, with little regard for delivery. As technically proficient as these musicians are, they have a habit of tripping each other up, one guitarist trying for clean melody while the other attempts a staccato mathcore assault,and they rarely gel together well. Greg Puciato is another big problem, since his vocals are rarely driving or brutal enough to really carry across the vile subject matter of the lyrics. Seriously, a lot of this wouldn't be out of place on a Tyler, The Creator album but he barks through it like it was just another typical hardcore album, when he's not doing painful Mike Patton impressions. It's for these reasons that "Sunshine the Werewolf," "Phone Home," "The Perfect Design" and "We Are the Storm" are by far the best songs on the album: They have the most extreme subject matter on the album, but they're also the songs where the band starts treating that fact like an asset rather than shoving it into the background, using sudden time signature changes and bleak atmospherics to bring across the vicious horror contained within the songs. These are the songs where The Dillinger Escape Plan is heavy enough and mean enough to bring their gruesome vision to life, and it's a shame that they couldn't maintain that level of conviction throughout the album's (rather sparse, it should be noted) 40 minute run time.

Ultimately, what brings down "Miss Machine" is its total lack of focus. Is it a horrifying spiral into the mind of a sexually depraved madman? The lyrics say so, but the actual music tries to convince the listener that the musicianship itself is first and foremost. That said, once you're aware of the album's concept, it becomes impossible to look at the album as just another mathcore record and you start to wonder why the themes weren't either more thoroughly integrated into the tone of the music or dropped altogether. It's certainly an uncomfortable album, but not in the way the band members wanted it to be. "Miss Machine" ends up drawing your attention in so many different directions that it starts to seem like the band itself didn't end up making the most of any of the things it wanted you to pay attention to.

Report this review (#552057)
Posted Monday, October 17, 2011 | Review Permalink
1 stars There's a certain point where music can build up too much of a head of steam and simply become a malformed mess of half baked ideas and botched compositions. This is the fate of Dillinger Escape Plan's second album, Miss Machine, released in 2004. Myself never a fan of the band, I will admit their early albums set some standards. Unfortunately such influence does not excuse the honestly poor quality of Miss Machine. The cover alone explains everything wrong with this album; a jumble of angst-ridden songs that try so very hard to be aggressive that it falls backwards into the silly category. Not to mention when placed alongside the band's other (mediocre) discography, this honestly disquieting work sticks out like blood on snow. Any talent the band could show unfortunately does not translate well here. Uncomfortable and unenjoyable, this album is one for only those who seek the roughest listening experience possible.
Report this review (#1579132)
Posted Wednesday, June 15, 2016 | Review Permalink

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