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Watchtower - Energetic Disassembly CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

4.03 | 101 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars And progressive metal was born. I remember the first time I listened to this it was truly something else, the over the top high pitched vocals, the great riffs, evey different instrument being shred to bits, the technologically paranoid lyrics, the blistering technicality (which was all but unheard of at the time). Energetic disassembly?, truly energetic music.

Once again the musicians are fantastic, Billy white on guitars pulls out some magical riffs and his solos are very interesting - not to mention the guy shreds. Jason McMaster on vocals is an acquired taste, the over the top high pitched hair metal shrill isn't for everyone - once I gave it a chance though I actually started to like it - a lot. The drums are the highlight of the musicianship here, extremely varied and interesting I always have a great deal of respect for drummers who are capable of producing intense technical metal drumming without the use of double kick (that isn't to say I don't love double kick) Rick Colaluca does so much more than hold the band together he pretty much dictates every song. Unfortunately while the bass is extremely competent it isn't terribly prominent and that brings me on to the next point - the production. I'm a big fan of 80's metal production but even so the production is very rough, the guitars are very far down in the mix (besides the solos) and it's hard to perceive much aside from the drums and the vocals which is kind of a shame and I think it would have been better with real drums as opposed to electronic drums.

Every track on this album is a gem, they all have some great bit that you'll want to listen to over and over again, though there are some standouts and early on meltdown is probably the best song on the album in my opinion. The main riff is great, perfect mix of musicality and technicality, the lyrics here really entertain me, talk of geiger counters, waste disposal, radiation sickness and it's capped off with a blistering solo. Energetic disassembly the title track is another highlight with a masterful drum driven middle section.

When I first listened to this I didn't even know it was the first progressive metal album ever and it blew me away when I did, this stuff is more progressive and technical than most progressive metal released today and that is an amazing achievement. Highly recommended to fans of 80's metal especially thrash and fans of progressive metal who want to explore the genre's roots.

FruMp | 5/5 |


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