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The Dillinger Escape Plan - Ire Works CD (album) cover


The Dillinger Escape Plan


Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.76 | 103 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars 'Ire Works' continues from where 'Miss Machine' left off, applying the more melodic approach to their music while still being as angry and aggressive as ever. The album also experiments much further than previous efforts, with some tracks focusing on pure mathcore while others add an extremely distinct electronic element to them, while others are a completely different beast, being alternative metal along the lines of Faith No More. This diversity makes the album an extremely interesting listen making you question what the next track has in store, and never dropping this unpredictability throughout.

The album starts off with an immense one-two punch with 'Fix Your Face' and 'Lurch'. Both of these songs follow the traditional style of TDEP, filled with extremely raw anger and incredibly violent instrumentation, with complex changes, yet sounding making to simply freaking out on all of them. Even in these two songs, particularly 'Fix Your Face', there is still some clear sign of the more melodic approach, with moments using very clear guitar riffs for a few moments before returning to the regular chaos of the music. 'Black Bubblegum' is the equivalent to 'Setting Fire To Sleeping Giants' or 'Unretrofied' of this album, with a heavier leaning on an alt-metal sound, being a fun, catchy, accessible song. I do really enjoy this song both despite how simple and especially out of place it sounds, as I find the chorus to be greatly enjoyable. The middle portion of the album, form 'Sick On Sunday' to '82588' follow a very similar concept, each being very short experiments with electronics, making for some really cool sounding songs. 'Sick on Sunday' has a really cool, glitchy effect to it, akin to that of breakcore. This song honestly reminds me of something by 'Igorrr' in terms of the frenetic drumming combined with the vocal performance. 'When Acting As A Wave' is the other highlight of this section, messing around with time signatures and rhythm to an extreme degree, making for an extremely strange, yet entertaining listen that makes full use of the technology at play. 'Milk Lizard' is one of the most entertaining songs on the album, despite the simplicity and less prominent aggression of it. I really enjoy the main riff with the horns backing it up, which then leads into a really great chorus. This is easily the catchiest, most enjoyable song by the band, and while I know that this isn't what this band is about, it doesn't change the fact that it's a downright great song. 'Party Smasher' is another standard DEP track without too much that stands out about it, but it still is a pretty fun track with some awesome breakdowns.

The final three tracks are my personal favourite part of the album, having some melody while also being really great and experimental, rather than just catchy and fun. 'Dead As History' has a sublime, atmospheric intro, with a quiet electronic beat to it with what seems like female operatic vocals in the background. This song then develops into an awesome use of electronic music with rock, while the vocals have an eerie sound almost similar to that of Jonathon Davis from 'Korn'. The song goes through various changes, with a great chorus that then transitions into some great use of piano as your can faintly hear chugging of guitars. 'Horse Hunter' moves from style to style with reckless abandon, starting off sounding like a regular mathcore song, before breaking down into jazz, all before focusing more on atmosphere, with some decent falsetto vocals. My favourite part of this is the last minute, which features Brent Hinds from 'Mastodon', completely stealing the show with a great vocal hook that really makes the song something special. 'Mouth Of Ghosts' proves to be one of the best songs the band has made, having a really beautiful intro that leads into a great Latin section. The song builds upon itself more and more as it progresses, with the lead up to the vocals adding a great deal of subtle elements, such as the at first quiet maracas. The percussion in general is quite impressive here, and this is a great closer in general.

There are a couple of issues I have with this album however, despite it being mostly great. My one issue is that some of the middle section is quite unmemorable, particularly '82588', which I find offers very little to the album, being by far the least memorable pure mathcore songs, and don't even find the second, quieter half to be particularly interesting. My biggest issue with this album is definitely the confused tone that it has, which while on one hand, plays nicely as a strength in terms of it being unpredictable, keeping you on your toes throughout, it also has the issue that certain songs, most notably 'Black Bubblegum' end up being incredibly jarring. Other than this, there aren't any major problems to speak of, since this album is great for the most part, with even the strange tone of it to not be anything big enough to drop the album for.

I really like the further experimentation present on this album, and find the eclectic nature of it to make it a highlight of 'The DIllinger Escape Plan's' discography, displaying their ability to create good music of many differing styles. I find the electronic influence to also be quite admirable here, as it is utilised in such a way that fits perfectly into what is trying to be created. While this is nothing like the completely unhinged violence of 'Calculating Infinity', it's still an extremely high quality album that I greatly enjoy.

Best Songs: Milk Lizard, Horse Hunter, Mouth of Ghosts

Weakest Songs: 82588, When Acting As A Particle

Verdict: A more accessible album by TDEP, that while tonally off at times, is still an extremely enjoyable listening experience that touches upon a wide variety of styles. I'd recommend this to anyone who enjoys extremely heavy music yet also doesn't mind to have an extremely varied listening experience. For those who don't enjoy heavy music, I'd recommend listening to Black Bubblegum, Dead As History and Mouth Of Ghosts, as these tracks are more than suitable for a somewhat wider audience.

Kempokid | 4/5 |


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