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VOIVOD

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal • Canada


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Voivod biography
Formed in Jonquière, Quebec, Canada in 1982 - Still active as of 2018

VOIVOD formed in 1982 as a fairly straitforward metal band, favoring the British Metal end of the spectrum. After a few years their sound took a major turn to the progressive side, incorporating futuristic imagery and unified concepts for albums. Two of the four founding members (bassist Jean-Yves Theriault and vocalist Denis Belanger) left Voivod in the early 90s; the band continued as a trio in the late 1990s with new member Eric Forrest handling both vocals and bass guitar. Forrest was badly injured in a car accident in Germany in 1998, and Voivod briefly disbanded in 2001 before Belanger returned to the band. Since the death in 2005 of Denis D'Amour (guitars), the current incarnation features two of the four founding members: Denis Belanger (vocals), and Michel Langevin (drums) along with Jason Newsted (of Flotsam and Jetsam and Metallica) on bass guitar. They rank alongside DREAM THEATER as pioneers in the development of progressive metal in the 80s, but tend to favor a heavier and more sparse musical style more akin to QUEENSRYCHE. Keyboards (or any other instruments besides vocals, guitars, drums, and bass) are almost non-existent in the music.

Their first truly progressive album was "Killing Technology" (1987), followed by "Dimension: Hatross" (1988) which is often considered their most innovative work. "Nothingface" (1989) continued on the science fiction theme, and featured a cover version of PINK FLOYD's "Astronomy Domine" (They also covered PINK FLOYD's "The Nile Song" on their 1993 release "The Outer Limits"). "Angel Rat" (1991) is also well-regarded in progressive metal circles. They continue to record and tour, and have been seen on the Ozzfest roster a few times.

If you like your music heavy, dark, and cold with a pronounced sci-fi flavor, VOIVOD is essential. They are worth checking out for the PINK FLOYD cover songs alone.

James Lee, USA

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VOIVOD discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

VOIVOD top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.03 | 103 ratings
War And Pain
1984
2.59 | 97 ratings
RRROOOAAARRR!!!
1986
4.05 | 183 ratings
Killing Technology
1987
4.30 | 244 ratings
Dimension Hatross
1988
4.25 | 341 ratings
Nothingface
1989
3.85 | 162 ratings
Angel Rat
1991
4.15 | 169 ratings
The Outer Limits
1993
2.43 | 77 ratings
Negatron
1995
3.05 | 78 ratings
Phobos
1997
3.10 | 72 ratings
Voivod
2003
3.12 | 76 ratings
Katorz
2006
3.17 | 60 ratings
Infini
2009
3.91 | 101 ratings
Target Earth
2013
4.02 | 93 ratings
The Wake
2018
3.96 | 29 ratings
Synchro Anarchy
2022

VOIVOD Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.17 | 18 ratings
Voivod Lives
2000
3.28 | 13 ratings
Warriors of Ice
2011
3.80 | 5 ratings
Live At Roadburn 2011
2012

VOIVOD Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

3.49 | 16 ratings
D-V-O-D-1
2005
4.25 | 4 ratings
Tatsumaki - Voivod Japan 2008
2009

VOIVOD Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.45 | 11 ratings
The Best of Voivod
1992
2.13 | 18 ratings
Kronik
1998
4.00 | 6 ratings
To The Death 84
2011
4.04 | 5 ratings
Build Your Weapons (The Very Best of The Noise Years 1986-1988)
2017
3.00 | 2 ratings
The Nuclear Blast Recordings
2018

VOIVOD Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.50 | 6 ratings
Anachronism
1983
4.40 | 5 ratings
To The Death
1984
3.60 | 5 ratings
Morgöth Invasion
1984
4.00 | 7 ratings
Thrashing Rage
1986
4.33 | 9 ratings
Cockroaches
1987
4.33 | 3 ratings
Astronomy Domine
1989
4.50 | 4 ratings
Into My Hypercube
1989
4.50 | 4 ratings
The Lost Machine
1993
4.75 | 4 ratings
Fix My Heart
1993
4.67 | 3 ratings
The Nile Song
1994
4.20 | 5 ratings
Nanoman
1996
5.00 | 1 ratings
Live at MusiquePlus
2000
4.00 | 3 ratings
Voivod
2002
3.50 | 2 ratings
We Carry On
2003
4.00 | 4 ratings
Mechanical Mind
2012
4.00 | 4 ratings
Kluskap O' Kom
2013
4.00 | 3 ratings
Forever Mountain / Phonetics for the Stupefied (with Napalm Death)
2015
4.11 | 9 ratings
We Are Connected
2015
4.00 | 3 ratings
Fall / Gospel Of The Horns (with Entombed A.D.)
2016
3.61 | 23 ratings
Post Society
2016
4.33 | 3 ratings
Silver Machine
2017
3.17 | 4 ratings
The End of Dormancy
2020

VOIVOD Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Synchro Anarchy by VOIVOD album cover Studio Album, 2022
3.96 | 29 ratings

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Synchro Anarchy
Voivod Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars When Canada's most distinguished technical thrash metal band VOIVOD hit the scene all the way back in 1984 with its balls-to-the-wall debut "War And Pain" the metal world wasn't quite prepared for its impact as if this strange musical outfit had drifted in on some asteroid that hit the planet and suddenly infected the eardrums of musical extremists. The band pretty much created its own branch of metal music from the getgo and only preceded to drift into more avant-garde and progressive territories as time went on. Luckily the world caught up to the idiosyncrasies laid down by these Quebecois thrashers who easily distinguished themselves from the other so-called big four bands Sacrifice, Razor and Annihilator.

Despite having found its own unique musical niche in the now expansive world of metal music, VOIVOD remains even to this current day an act that sounds like no other. While some bands like Dream Theater or Metallica for example have legions of imitators, VOIVOD for some reason has never spawned an army of clones or bands that were influenced by them. None have even come close to its bizarre otherworldly mix of jangled guitar chord rampages, time signature quirkiness and slinking musical processions that really do insinuate a parallel reality that sits outside of the perception of most human beings trapped in the 3D construct. Yet somehow VOIVOD has tapped into the large potentials just outside of the perception of many and made a multi-decade career out of it.

With the loss of Denis D'Amour aka Piggy in 2005 it was presumed that the founder of VOIVOD's unique guitar angularities would take his secrets to the grave but lo and behold the world had not only accepted VOIVOD's unique musical visions but worshipped them. In came Daniel Mongrain to take the role as guitar mangler and has so far channeled the spirit of Piggy as if Piggy actually simply took over his body and continues to steer his music in an almost eerie similarity. Here we are in 2022 and VOIVOD returns with its 15th studio album SYNCHRO ANARCHY and the band which now features the lineup of Michel "Away" Langevin (drums), Denis "Snake" Bélanger (vocals), Mongrain on guitars and Dominique "Rocky" Laroche (bass) remain in the same lineup as 2018's amazing comeback "The Wake."

Graced with the same style of Twilight Zone visual arts that the band has adopted since the more progressive albums such as "Killing Technology" began to test metal heads' preconceptions all the way back in the 1980s, SYNCHRO ANARCHY continues the now tried and true comfort zone that VOIVOD has been gracefully following for quite some time now and while many are going ballistic over the fact that this band never deviates from the norm and release some kind of polka metal hybrid or something just so they can trash it and castigate them for not sticking to something they know best, the truth is VOIVOD is actually quite good at what they do and after all since there are really no contenders for this particular style of hardcore punk infused tech thrash metal skirting the world of prog rock and Motorhead-esque 80s metal, why stop now?

It's true that metal has come a long way since VOIVOD's musicians were the true masters of weird back in the late 1980s with a gazillion bands that are even weirder these days but just because VOIVOD no longer are the masters of weird by no means signifies that they are ready to be put to pasture any time soon. SYNCHRO ANARCHY may not reinvent the wheel or any other instrument of metal navigation but what it does accomplish is that it delivers a no nonsense ferocious attack of proggy tech thrash metal that only VOIVOD can dish out in abundance. The band wastes no time with the opening "Paranormalium" which delivers ample doses of jittery schizoid guitar riffs in classic atonality in conjunct with the oddball off-kilter counterpoints of the bass, drums and distinctly VOIVOD vocal style of Snake.

The album may not take VOIVOD to "The Outer Limits" as their style once did but at this point in their career these guys are legends and are quite remarkable in how they consistently deliver album after album of top notch VOIVOD-isms in top musical form. No, i'm not expecting VOIVOD to try to be the next Mr Bungle or psychedelic blackened death metal band. I expect VOIVOD to remain exactly what they are on their own terms and in that regard SYNCHRO ANARCHY is an excellent delivery of their classic sounds and stylistic quirks. Having said that i do find this album to be less compelling than "The Wake." Compositionally speaking, SYNCHRO ANARCHY does seem to be content in simply retreading that which has been done without even the tiniest attempt to step things up or meander into other sectors of the VOIVOD universe. Nope. These guys have fully opted to deliver what most fans probably expect and that's what they do on this release.

So when evaluating and reviewing a classic act like VOIVOD perhaps its better to take into consideration that the band is in a league of its own and avoid comparisons to other bands both stylistically and in a temporal context. VOIVOD has always exited in the vacuum of the space-time continuum utterly and blissfully unconcerned about what is happening around them and for that i truly applaud this band who shows no signs of insecurity as many an aging metal band has displayed over time. These guys know what they do best and they deliver that with a gusto unmatched by many of the old timers. In that regard VOIVOD can only be compared to itself and in terms of VOIVOD releases, SYNCHRO ANARCHY may not sit high on the band's canon as best releases but ounce for ounce this one more than delivers the goods for a true VOIVOD fan with not a band track to be heard. To my ears this is yet another excellent slice of nerdy tech thrash metal that will get several return visits as time marches on.

 Synchro Anarchy by VOIVOD album cover Studio Album, 2022
3.96 | 29 ratings

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Synchro Anarchy
Voivod Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by lukretio

4 stars As I write this, there is a furious storm raging outside my window. The trees sway madly from side to side, splinters and small branches fly off in all directions, and all living things hide away in awe and terror, as the wind ravishes the land, howling in all its force. This ravaged scenario describes fairly accurately how my head also feels after listening to Synchro Anarchy, the 15th studio album by Canadian prog metal veterans Voivod. Out on February 11th via Century Media, the LP is a staggering, mind-blowing listening experience that left me speechless, stupefied and punch-drunk. As I am here scratching my head trying to make sense of what I just heard, only two things are clear to me. First, Voivod sound like no other band I ever listened to and stand tall in a league of their own. Second, Synchro Anarchy is a stupendous example of how to write music that is truly genre-defying and progressive.

Before I tell you further about this album, I have a confession to make. Despite being an avid prog rock/metal fan, for some reason Voivod have always flown below my radar until now. Of course, I had heard of them, but I never really took the time to sit down and listen to their music. When I saw Synchro Anarchy in the The Metal Oberver promo list, I decided that it was time for me to take a step into the unknown and find out what I actually thought of Voivod. Well, based on what I heard on Synchro Anarchy, I can only tell you that I have been a fool to ignore this awesome band for so long and that the next thing I'll do when I finish this review, is go and check out their whole back catalogue!

If I were to describe Synchro Anarchy to someone who, like me, never approached the Quebecois spaceship before, I'd say that the album is a genre-bending amalgamation of proto-metal, thrash, jazz-infected prog, and space rock. A lot of it can very much feel like an acquired taste. The music is difficult and uncompromising, full of dissonance, shifting rhythms and variable tempos. It is rarely melodic, but when melodies do come to surface, their contrast with the challenging musical background is simply irresistible, producing the same spellbinding effect of the mirage of an oasis in the desert. Structurally, the songs twist and turn like live snakes, as far removed as possible from the canonical verse/chorus repetition. Snippets of phrases and melodies return circularly before disintegrating again into new black holes that take the music into completely different directions.

The musicianship is incredible. I was especially impressed by Chewy's guitarwork, which is simply one of the most inventive I have heard in a long time on a metal album. My first thought was that this is how Robert Fripp (King Crimson) would have sounded if he was born 15 years later and decided to play thrash metal instead of progressive rock. The guitar riffs are angular and irregular. The use of unusual and dissonant chords is jarring, and so are the sudden explosions of jazz-infected leads and solos. Chewy's performance is mind-blowing and is alone worth the price of the album. The rhythm section is no less spectacular. Drummer Away and bassist Rocky are a formidable pair that give the songs a solid rhythmic base that feels at the same time adventurous and tight, intricate and powerful. Snake's singing is also impressive, in the same way as Lemmy's (Motorhead) or Ozzy Osbourne's vocals can be arresting. The beauty does not lie in the melodiousness or technicality of the performance, but rather in its unique character, halfway between ritualistic psalmody and punk singing. It transmits a sense of otherworldliness and transcendence that is a perfect complement for the alien musical background conjured up by the other three musicians.

There is a primal and vibrant energy running through the 9 tracks of the album, which gives away how much fun Voivod must have had writing and recording this LP. The fun is infectious for the audience too: the music is fresh and exciting, and it contains that elusive combination of raw power and dark energy that leaves you exhilarated, fervid and electrified as only quintessential metal albums can do. The flurry of bright, left-field ideas that traverse the album keep you constantly on your toes as you are never quite sure which direction each new song may take. The title-track "Synchro Anarchy" is a beautiful rollercoaster that keeps you glued to your headphones, as dissonant chords and odd times give way to a gorgeously accessible melodic chorus. "Planet Eaters" is a punkish beast that constantly challenges the listener with angular riffs, shifting tempos and sudden accelerations, before exploding in a beautiful jazzy solo. "Mind Clock" is a more atmospheric affair that turns things down a notch, offering some respite to the audience, before the frontal assault of "Sleeves Off", another track that brings to the fore the punk verve of the record. Meanwhile, the album's second half offers some darker cuts, like the Sabbathian "Holographic Thinking" or the doomy "Memory Failure" that closes the LP.

Graced by an immaculate sound production - warm, vibrant and with plenty of nuance -, Synchro Anarchy is a record not to miss. It's a splendid Frankenstein that brings together genres as diverse as jazz, space rock and thrash in an exhilarating musical experience that truly incarnates the meaning of the word "progressive". Stellar musicianship, intelligent songwriting, and irresistible energy - Synchro Anarchy has it all. The album's mad sonic assault may not be to everyone's taste, but those readers who do not mind being challenged and pushed beyond conventional music borders should look no further. This is the real deal. Go and buy it.

[Originally written for The Metal Observer]

 Build Your Weapons (The Very Best of The Noise Years 1986-1988) by VOIVOD album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2017
4.04 | 5 ratings

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Build Your Weapons (The Very Best of The Noise Years 1986-1988)
Voivod Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Necrotica
Collaborator Prog Metal Team

4 stars Listening to a compilation like Build Your Weapons... is pretty interesting, as it shows us just how much Voivod evolved within the span of just a few albums. The first album on offer, Rrroooaaarrr is an incredibly gritty affair that's comparable to extreme NWOBHM bands like Venom or teutonic thrash groups like Kreator. But, as I'm sure many of you are aware, Killing Technology and Dimension Hatross were huge stylistic leaps and bounds because of the band's new progressive metal direction (one that would reach its peak with Nothingface). So what's nice is that you're getting both sides of the band's early years. Everything in the collection is presented in fantastic remastered editions, which give the albums more clarity without removing the buzzsaw distortion and gnarly tone each original album had. Granted, not every song from each album is included here; Build Your Weapons... is more of a greatest-hits reel that highlights some of Voivod's finest material from that particular era. And, to be honest, the playlist we have here is fantastic. Fan favorites like the brutal thrasher "Fuck Off and Die" and the cosmic mini-epic "Killing Technology" are featured here, alongside slightly lesser known cuts such as the vastly underrated prog metal classic "Forgotten in Space" and the dark, sprawling Dimension Hatross cut "Tribal Convictions."

As such, the band's respective talents are on full display here. The unusual melodic hooks and harsh yells uttered by Snake, the bizarre dissonance and jazz chords of Piggy, the technical-yet-melodious basslines of Blacky, and highly dynamic drumwork of Away manage to represent Voivod at their best lineup and best chemistry. Admittedly, Rrroooaaarrr is definitely the weakest album on offer here, if mostly because the band's signature style and - again - chemistry, didn't quite gel yet. The band's performances were a bit sloppier and the songwriting wasn't distinct enough compared to what they would eventually become. Still, it's quite unbelievable what they did become. Just listen to how the relationship between the manic guitar leads and the rolling drums that kick off "Psychic Vacuum," or the wild jumps between accessible hooks and experimental chords in "Chaosmongers," or how the opening to "Cockroaches" just features a rapid-fire mini tapping solo for no [%*!#]ing reason. The reason Voivod were such a great band is that they threw away the thrash rulebook before most bands ever had the balls to do so. The combination of progressive songwriting and sci-fi themes led to the end result of a band who was redefining the way people thought about metal's core properties. And that, I believe, is the mark of a legendary group.

As I stated above, this is a great collection for anyone who's new to Voivod and wants to hear what all the acclaim is about. Granted, this probably would have been a better collection if they replaced Rrroooaaarrr with the band's 1989 masterpiece Nothingface, but seeing as it wasn't released on the Noise label, I suppose there's nothing that can be done about that. Regardless, this is a solid collection of progressive thrash music that benefits from a newly beefed-up production and well-chosen songs. Viva la Voivod!

 Dimension Hatross by VOIVOD album cover Studio Album, 1988
4.30 | 244 ratings

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Dimension Hatross
Voivod Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Gorgut Muncher

5 stars Progressive Thrash! With a unique lead singer and a strange sound, Voivod have crafted a very defined sound. The songs are very fast paced and kinda feel like a faster Radiohead. Technicality is top notch and very enjoyable all the way through. If you like Radiohead, Metallica or Dream Theater then you will really like this album. The best tracks are Brain Scan and Experiment, with the latter having an atmospheric section at the beginning.

Absolutely recommended, go check it out! The album has just eight proper tracks and clocks at around forty minutes so it shouldn't be hard to do a full listen. It's gotta be five Stars for me.

 Dimension Hatross by VOIVOD album cover Studio Album, 1988
4.30 | 244 ratings

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Dimension Hatross
Voivod Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Artik

5 stars It's prog thrash metal I would say. There is concept (fascinating sci-fi story of microgalaxy) to this album, there are maverick rhythms and mindblowing riffs. Clean vocals made it easier for the prog crowd to digest it, but they are mean enough to be appreciated by metalheads, who are open enough for all the complexity. The music is dense, fast and adventurous, and in all this somewhat catchy. Besides it bears enough qualities of it's own to be recognised as Voivod and not mistaken for anyone else. It gives enourmous pleasure for a listener. And it's very important in the history of prog metal as it basicly gave birth to the subgenre pushing the boundries further than Metalica's "...And justice for all" and it's probably more developed than "The music of Erich Zann" by Mekong Delta - both released the same year. In it's category (so to fully aprreciate you would have to like metal aesthetic) it's a 5 star prog masterpiece.
 The Wake by VOIVOD album cover Studio Album, 2018
4.02 | 93 ratings

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The Wake
Voivod Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Isaac Peretz

5 stars I don't think there's another feeling as beautiful as watching one of your favorite bands make one of their best albums after a stream of good, but not incredible, works.

"The Wake" is Voivod's 14th studio album (damn!), and it's a direct continuation to the concept album that comes right before it, "Target Earth" which explains why both album covers got a similar art style.

I will be honest when I tell you that I was incredibly hyped for this album the moment I realized there was a +10 minute song in it. I'm used to long songs, but Voivod rarely makes them! And by rarely I mean they have only made two in their entire discography, the first one being their best song "Jack Luminous".

Of course, this album is classic Voivod. Fast paced prog-thrash songs with Sci-fi lyrical themes and a good balance of ambience and heaviness. It only has eight tracks but each of them have enough substance to stand by themselves or when doing full listens.

I'm happy and proud to give this record a five star rating. So happy to see this band still has a spark of creativity.

 Dimension Hatross by VOIVOD album cover Studio Album, 1988
4.30 | 244 ratings

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Dimension Hatross
Voivod Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Isaac Peretz

5 stars Voivod's first grand breakthrough: Very sound defining and very progressive.

After the raw thrash masterpiece that was its predecessor "Killing Technology", "Dimension Hatröss" has Voivod stepping into more progressive areas.

This album is pretty heavy and I also felt it was a little more experimental, featuring many sections with Sci-Fi-sounding effects spread all around the album (for those who don't know, Voivod's favorite lyric material has almost always been Sci-Fi).

The album begins with "Experiment": A 6-Minute track that begins with a slow fade in, only to start with a funky and heavy riff. Just like Nothingface's "The Unknown Knows", this track defines the sound for the rest of the album.

This album is Voivod's first greatest breakthrough (Killing Technology was a masterpiece as well but it wasn't as unique as this album), and I truly believe it is essential to any tech/extreme metal album collection.

Oh and in case you're wondering: It has no growls. So if you're a 70s prog and and enjoy metal, you can try this album (and the rest of Voivod's discography) with no problem.

 Nothingface by VOIVOD album cover Studio Album, 1989
4.25 | 341 ratings

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Nothingface
Voivod Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Isaac Peretz

5 stars Voivod's second grand breakthrough. After the very progressive and sound-defining "Dimension Hatröss" released just one year before, Voivod's fifth album, "Nothingface" finds Voivod at one of its many creative peaks.

Nothingface was meant to be their commercial breakthrough, featuring more accessible music compared to their previous albums, while using the progressive aspects from its predecessor.

It wasn't that much of a commercial breakthrough unfortunately, but we got an even better type of breakthrough: A Creative One.

The album starts with The Unknown Knows: A catchy, progressive and heavy track. A very defining track as the rest of the album sounds alot like this one. One of my favorites from the album.

Gotta give it five stars because of how unique (and well executed) this album (and the rest of Voivod's discography starting from Killing Technology) is, and how well executed its ideas are.

 The End of Dormancy by VOIVOD album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2020
3.17 | 4 ratings

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The End of Dormancy
Voivod Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars "The End of Dormancy" is an EP release by Canadian progressive/thrash metal act Voivod. The EP was released through Century Media Records in July 2020. It´s a 3 track, 22:31 minutes long release, featuring a version of "The End of Dormancy" from "The Wake (2018)" (the band´s preceding album release) with added trumpets, saxophone and trombones titled "The End of Dormancy (Metal Section)", a live version of the same track and a live version of "The Unknown Knows" (the studio version of that track is featured on "Nothingface (1989)"), recorded at Montreal Jazz Fest 2019. A video was also released for the new brass version of "The End of Dormancy".

The inclusion of the brass arrangement to "The End of Dormancy" works really well and gives the song a bombastic quality. Voivod experimentet with string arrangements on "The Wake (2018)" (on "Iconspiracy" and on "Sonic Mycelium") and now with a brass arrangement on "The End of Dormancy", see them come out as victors. I´d not give that trend up just yet as those experiments definitely provide some spice to Voivod´s already adventurous songwriting approach. The live version of "The End of Dormancy", which also features the brass arrangement, and the live version of "The Unknown Knows" are both well performed and both also feature a good quality live sound.

Listening to the same track twice on a release (although in two different versions), is seldom something which pleases my ears and I can´t say this EP changes that. So while the quality of the performances, the material, and the sound quality of both the studio track and the two live tracks are of a high quality, the EP as a full listening experience does suffer slightly from the live version of "The End of Dormancy" directly succeeding the studio version on the tracklist. I think it would have worked better if "The Unknown Knows" had been placed between the two versions of the title track. So there´s nothing wrong with the content of the release, but a good tracklist flow is important too, and that´s where this EP score low. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is still fully deserved.

(Originally posted on Metal Music Archives)

 Nothingface by VOIVOD album cover Studio Album, 1989
4.25 | 341 ratings

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Nothingface
Voivod Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Powerful metal music with an incongruously "nice" vocalist--he sounds too New Wave/post-punk--like he hasn't moved out of the 1980s and barely out of the late 70s. And the music itself occupies more of the high end of the octaval spectrum, making it not nearly as dark or heavy metal as I expected--more like new-wave punk or post- punk.

1. "Intro / The Unknown Knows" (5:55) Great opening. Vocal more like The Clash or The Ambitious Lovers.(8.5/10)

2. "Nothingface" (4:14) more of an avant vocal with a mezzo metal sound palate. (8.75/10)

3. "Astronomy Domine" (Pink Floyd cover) (5:30) suitably metallized. I don't really know (or like) the original) so this is a nice improvement. The best sounding song on the album so far. (9/10)

4. "Missing Sequences" (5:50) opens with a sinister musical and vocal display, until a shift at 0:45 takes it into more technically proficient punk territory. Weird chordal and tempo shifts beneath the singer's constant delivery. Too many shifts. It's as if many riffs and cut from other songs or ideas got all spliced together for this one. Weird, but kind of cool and clever. (8.75/10)

5. "X-Ray Mirror" (4:28) opens a little Crimsonian before turning more tech-metal. Vocally, I'm reminded of Bowie, Zappa, Peter Hammill, and Arto Lindsay. Nice guitar work throughout. (9/10)

6. "Inner Combustion" (3:48) IMHO, the Peter Hammill-like vocal doesn't really fit with the music. Arto Lindsay stylings in the second half. It's as if the band of musicians and the vocalist are operating in two different universes. (8/10)

7. "Pre-Ignition" (5:12) the most complexly constructed and cleverly executed song on the album, for once the lyrics are paled by the work of the musicians. (8.75/10)

8. "Into My Hypercube" (5:04) opens with a soft, gentle sonic palette--even the whispery vocal--until 0:35 when full power distortion is engaged and the vocalist restores his grit. Kind of a cool BLUE 'YSTER CULT Secret Treaties vibe to this one. (8.75/10)

9. "Sub-Effect" (4:30) not sure why, but I think this is my favorite song on the album. I think it's the melody and fitting shifts. (9/10)

Total Time: 44:31

I imagine people who like intelligent lyrics set to thin-walled guitar-bass-and-drums metal would love this.

B/four stars; an excellent heavier contribution to Prog World--especially as it's coming from the 1980s!

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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