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Meshuggah - Chaosphere CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.94 | 185 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Ah yes, Chaosphere. Honestly, the name of the album is really the best way to describe it. A sphere of chaos...that's certainly what your head might feel like! Perhaps their most brutal album, this is the true transition point in the Meshuggah discography. While it has still has a thrashy feel, overall it is slower and except for the solos, the jazz fusion has been dropped. Instead it has been replaced with pure brutality. The riffs are heavy beyond imagination, atonal, pounding and does not let up from start to finish. Also, this is where Meshuggah started moving in the technical direction we now know.

The time signatures and all over the place and vary greatly, even in one song! The guitars may be playing in 5/16 or 17/16 while the drums are in 4/4 and the time signatures change wildly throughout the song. The amazing thing is, it all melts together! Despite all that madness when it comes together it flows like a regular 4/4!

Perhaps to a simple music lover this will seem off beat, chaotic, and terrible. No doubt it takes a higher musical mind to truly enjoy this album. If you can really grasp WHAT the band is doing then this album is a gem. Despite its crazy rhythms and time signatures it all adds up in the end. This album is a mathematical masterpiece of music. Never thought an equation could sound so good!

Before I get into the actual songs, if you are a drummer then you must listen to this album for Haake's drumming! This is where he showcases his true skill. He can play a simple 4/4 beat with the cymbal and snare, yet play in 23/16 with the bass drums! Not to mention the stop and go/technical beats he lays down with the bass. The man must have 2 brains I swear.

Concatenation. A brutal song. Starts right out with the crushing riff. It sounds like a wall of noise. Get used to it. We also Haake's technical, off beat drumming and Jens violent vocals. The middle section has a jazz inspired solo by Fredrik, being played over an absolutely brutal rhythm guitar.

New Millennium Cyanide Christ. One of their most famous songs, and one of my favorites. This song is the epitome of Meshuggah. A 4/4 cymbal rhythm over a 23/16 with the kicks, being followed by the crushing guitars. There are 5 measures in 23/16, 1 in 13/16, 9 in 3/8 and 1 in 5/8. That adds up to 64/16 OR 16 measures in 4/4!

Corridor of Chameleons. Another wonderfully brutal song with some pounding, driving bass drum work from Haake. Of course there is an awesome Fredrik solo and some manic screaming.

Neurotica. A slower, cool sounding intro with some nice bass. The next riff is really cool and sounds like it is falling off. Overall, a slower song that sounds really cool.

The Mouth Licking What You've Bled. My second favorite from the album. An insane intro quickly followed more heaviness and Haake's now famous off beat drumming. These continue throughout the song. This song has a great solo, and at :54 is one of the most intense parts, ever.

Sane. This song has one of the coolest sounding drum beats ever. It sounds reversed...there is a continuous double bass with out of whack drumming on top. God knows what signature he is playing in. After the solo there is a long, slower section and at 2:45 is one of the most sections yet!

The Exquisite Machinery of Torture. A slow, heavy intro which is soon followed by almost rap like vocals. Really great sounding. One of the most unique solos on the album is in this song.

Elastic. Ah, what is prog without a 15 minute song? This is a true progressive song with the riffs and flow changing throughout, and some nice solos. A really slow, creepy section kicks in after 4:00 and at 6:00 things really get messed up. The next 5 minutes is just a noise. A noise that will consume your soul and make most go into a mental breakdown. Then in the blink of an eye a true wall of madness barrages you. It is EVERY song on the album being played at once. Pure madness!

What to say? This is an amazing album. This is only for metal heads, the regular progger should stay FAR away. Every song is good, but none really stand out. They all sound similar, and have a similar feel. While it's good, not diverse....therefore this album can not get a 5. If you take the vocals, and pure brutality this album is a must have for most prog-metal fans. 4 stars

JJLehto | 4/5 |


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