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Meshuggah - Chaosphere CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.94 | 187 ratings

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4 stars Chaosphere is Meshuggah's third studio album which means that it's a follow-up to the groundbreaking Destroy Erase Improve. If that wasn't enough, it's also the highest rated Meshuggah release to date on Prog Archives. Let's sink our teeth into this album and see if the rating matches up to the quality!

The album doesn't mess around with its introduction and the first track literally jump at the listener with all it's rage and glory. Well, I guess it's mainly rage since there are a few far superior tracks coming up ahead. New Millenium Cyanide Christ is one of those great performances and it's probably the most mature composition out of the bunch since most of the other tracks tend to push things backwards more then forwards in the development of Meshuggah's sound. What I'm basically trying to convey here is that this album sounds more like a link between Contradictions Collapse and Destroy Erase Improve than a follow-up to the latter. At the same time, Chaosphere is also the band's most accessible album with ObZen and the original version of Nothing closely following it in that department. This has to do with a more straight-forward groove metal approach that some of these compositions undertake.

Almost all of the atmospheric guitar sections from Destroy Erase Improve have been replaced by crazy guitar solos and a much more technical approach to the sound. This of course doesn't take away for the overall album quality since tracks like Neurotica and The Mouth Licking What You've Bled are just as imaginative as ever, although with slight groove metal tendencies which I could have done without. Whispering vocal style is another no-no which might have worked for bands like Tool, but hearing it on The Exquisite Machinery Of Torture makes it sound laughable and ruins the overall mood of the composition. Even without the vocals this track is still the weakest link of this album due to its repetitive structure.

When I originally saw the track-listing for this release I was really enthusiastic about the 15+ minute composition titled Elastic. Since the previous lengthy track that the band offered, on None, turned out to be a disappointment I really had my hopes up for Elastic. Unfortunately it wasn't all that I was hoping for and to be perfectly clear the title does give away it's fatal flaw. Eventually I would have to wait a few more years until Meshuggah finally nailed the long track format with the release of an EP called I, but I'll get to that release in my next review!

Although Chaosphere might not be an improvement over the preceding album it's nice to see the band trying to mix things up. It's safe to say that we're definitely going to hear a lot more of this in the future!

***** star songs: New Millenium Cyanide Christ (5:36) Neurotica (5:19) The Mouth Licking What You've Bled (3:58)

**** star songs: Concatenation (4:14) Corridor Of Chameleons (5:03) Sane (3:49) Elastic (15:30)

*** star songs: The Exquisite Machinery Of Torture (3:56)

Rune2000 | 4/5 |


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