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No Brain Cell - No Brain Cell CD (album) cover


No Brain Cell


Heavy Prog

3.18 | 2 ratings

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3 stars No Brain Cell-No Brain Cell

'No Brain Cell' is the debut studio album by progressive metal band No Brain Cell. Now I'm usually against 'clone' bands, and you could very easily call No Brain Cell a Porcupine Tree clone. One thing I must say though, they don't try to hide it. They opened up for Porcupine Tree during their 'The Incident' tour, and this album has two covers of Porcupine Tree songs.

I really feel like a hypocrite when saying I do really like some of these songs. I dislike Haken's 'The Mountain', so I feel like I should dislike this too. Maybe it's because this isn't hailed as a masterpiece, maybe it's because Porcupine Tree is on hiatus and haven't released anything new since 2009, who knows, all I know is that this album has some pretty good stuff. The music here is very similar to Porcupine Tree's 2002 album 'In Absentia', which has some of my favorite songs like 'Strip the Soul' on it. I also hear a bit of Dream Theater in here too. The album opens up softly, with the acoustic 'Open Field Part I'. It reminds me a bit of an Opeth song off of their 'Damnation' album. It goes into 'Open Field Part II', which brings in the heavy guitar at the end. It's a decent pair of acoustic songs, but nothing special.

Probably the song that screams Porcupine Tree the most is 'Trapped in the Black'. It begins with some bass grooves that would not sound out of place on a PT song. The vocalist sounds pretty much exactly like Steven Wilson, having that some cold menacing tone. Soon heavy guitar blasts come in, and later some driving riffs appear. I really like the guitar blasts's transitions into the driving segments in this song. 'Endless Game' has some great driving riffs too, but here what screams PT are the crushing guitar riffs combined with choir sound effects. 'Illusions' has more crushing guitar riffs combined with choir. However, this song stands out on it's own a bit. I could see PT making a song like this, but some of the drum/bass interplay works very well and really stands out on it's own. The chorus is also pretty catchy. The covers of PT songs are good, but they sound almost exactly like the originals, so it just makes me rather listen to the amazing originals.

Overall, I really feel like I'm just listening to a new Porcupine Tree album when hearing this. This album's pro is it's con. I do enjoy the music, but it would also be nice to see the band be their own band. I can't really recommend it or not recommend it, but I suggest for fans of PT to check it out. The music is well played, but it's pretty much anything but unique.

3.5 rounded down to 3.

Pastmaster | 3/5 |


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