Meshuggah – Obzen

Meshuggah “Obzen”, ahhh it just flows out so sweetly, well here we go, first of all i would like to say, kind of like a disclaimer that Meshuggah might be my all time favorite band, so please take that into consideration with the review to this piece of shit… wait… maybe I’m getting ahead of myself, i get this very strange vibe, just like with Tool‘s 10000 Days, that the hype did not help at all, well lets start from the beginning, Meshuggah hail from Sweden and play “normally” a form of metal i like to describe as math metal (just like there is math rock) even though i like to call it calc metal, but if you want a more precise category i would say progressive death/thrash metal (wikipedia decided to call this avant-garde metal or experimental metal, but well we all know wikipedia is apparently filled with a bunch of crack heads that think that editing a piece of text on a website makes it true, fuck them), and their new album is out and its called Obzen, we have previously reviewed their albums Nothing and Catch 33, so lets get into it, shall we.

Obzen, is a shambled of an album … its not a “this doesn’t make sense” in a good way, its a “what the hell were they thinking”, i always expect new stuff or weird stuff from them, very little is ever normal and as such i find it very refreshing and enticing, but even in all the madness there was always something coherent, something that made sense, they were like Matryoshka Dolls, were each layer was different but it all fitted perfectly and therefore it made sense… now this “album” (if i should call it that) is like me getting tracks from their different albums and making a best of, sure there would be great tracks but it would all sound like shit together.

Well, I wont be talking a great deal about each track, no point really, the first 2 tracks, “Combustion” and “Electric Red” have nothing in common with the rest of the album, they sound like refreshed thrash metal, while “Bleed” (the single by the way… remember what i said about the 10000 Days single…) has nothing to with the rest of the album, its a mind blowing track with Tomas Haake doing a freakish double bass drum work that makes me lack the words to described it, it all sounds like white sound from a television… i would buy the album just for that track … but this inconsistencies go further, also the over abuse of “commercial” sounding ruses like slowing down or stopping a song to build it up again… cause i counted… they used it 7 times (that i noticed) almost in every single track, you know at some point that they will pause for some micro shitty interlude, I’ve got no problem with that, but it has to make sense… but overusing it is like Linkin Park making micro intros for every single shitty track they put out (sorry just went and saw one of their live shows and they sucked a bit).

“Lethargica” is next and the name fits the song, its kinda an OK track, with no big highlights it kinda drags on, now the title track “Obzen” is another beast, much more innovative and a bit of a headbanger with a more stop-goish groove going on with loads of highlights… “This Spiteful Snake” is an intricate groovy track, but still lacking, it doesn’t seem to go anywhere and ultimately it just feels self indulgent (trying to fit every single thing into it), “Pineal Gland Optics” we get a straight back to back speedier groove, again great quality and musicianship but with nothing else to add, “Pravus” is pushing again the silliness, its interesting, but not that audible, its a mishmash of musical techniques than music, we finish with “Dancers To A Discordant System”, that starts pretty mind blowing heavy and groovy (why didn’t they do this on some of the other tracks is beyond me), but then it gets into a certain pattern and although pretty good, it wasn’t nothing to call back home.

I know, maybe i expect too much, but like every Meshuggah album it takes a certain amount of time to really start understanding the music or a album, so i took that time, but after the 100th listen, these things still bug me like hell, i was expecting a lot of different things, i was expecting “Bleed”, but no, i get this best of (when their EP I, was the right way to do a Best Of) and then you join things like the freakishly moronic cover art that looks shitty and reminds me of the endogenous Marilyn Manson of Mechanical Animals, were at least he went over the top with it (in a good way), while with Meshuggah its just silly.

Ahh i wont drag this too long, they said in a interview that this was the first time they really had the time to make a album, and not be in a hurry, well then i hope for the next one, they’ll have to make it over a weekend, for sure we would get a masterpiece, this is above all a disappointment and will rarely fit my Meshuggah everyday playlist, don’t get me wrong, all this ranting should be taken with a touch of salt, the production is pretty much on the mark, and there are some really cool tracks (“Bleed” is Beyond Awesome), but i do expect a lot from this band, and I’m sorry to say but this time it feels, they over promised and under delivered, and that to me is a shame.

Official Site | Myspace Meshuggah | Vidcult Bleed Video

Meshuggah – Bleed

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  1. wow..1st to comment? really? well I just wanted to say that I think your review was an honest 1 but definitely from a fan so not exactly impartial..but complaint is wit u dissin the fits the album title which I think is cool and most bands don’t do that anyway..the title is obzen combing zen with a man in a meditative pose covered in blood seems perfectly logical..but just my opinion..again nice review

  2. sorry haha had to add that I think this is an awesome album..its just what they needed to enlarge their fanbase..I become a meshuggah fan because of made me want to check out their older work which made me discover just what talented and maybe alil fucked up geniuses they r..they really are an amazing band but I wouldn’t hav discovered thet without hearing sumthing alil easier to connect wit 1st…that’s it

  3. haiii, they are a bit thick to listen at start, best way is to listen to the older more thrashy stuff, that hit a sweeter more common spot, besides that… yeah i did say i’m a fan muahahhaha and everyone has their opinion ^_^

  4. It’s hard to argue with all of my friends that Obzen was not an outstanding Meshuggah album. WTF is up with all of the horrible fade outs??? Gawd.

  5. Well i would say its a pretty kick ass album, but as meshuggah fans, it kinda feels like its the bleed album, unlike other albums where most if not all tracks are memorable, this one has one epic track and a bunch of out of place pretty good meshuggah tracks, we demand MORE AWESOME!!!! hehehehe

    ps: i still love ya meshuggah hehehe

  6. Man, this reviewer sucks.

    He’s too stuck up and analytical with his ‘math rock’ and ‘calc metal’… Go the fuck back to math class if you want to be slanging that shit…

    Meshuggah is fucking straight out Metal… In their own class, they are their own genre.

    Also; as a listener of Meshuggah for a number of years now, I found this to be one of their most intense releases since Destroy, Erase, Improve and it is quickly becoming one of my favorite all time albums.

    As for the reviewers comments on 10,000 Days; it sounds like they are too much of a fucking faggy hipster who only listens to obscure music.

    Also an excellent work.

    Yes, bands get more successful and up their production ante, thats why they are where they are, and you are writing reviews for a website.

  7. you mean this review sucks… right? cause personal attacks just means you are a douchebag, that thinks his over-inflated self worth his way more important than his low level intelligence, but well i don’t know you so i cant really say that is true or not.. that’s just leave at that…

    regarding the rest of your comment, humm yeah well Meshuggah is Metal and they pretty much quick ass, but that’s as far as you got it right, the rest is again personal insinuation so i cant really comment on the validity cause well refer to the beginning of my comment, ohhh and the fact you liked 10.000 days, tells a lot about you muhahahahah.

  8. ahh, well sorry about the grammar, im not a native english speaker, so sometimes, it might sound a bit like random rambling, i should try and think things through and THEN write it down, instead of writing on-the-go, but to be the worst ever… humm gross exaggeration, yours is the worst ever.

  9. I thought most people called this “math metal.” Anyway, I don’t get where you are coming from. obZen is one of my favorite albums, ever. To each his/her own I guess.

  10. i call it something else, and im glad you liked obzen, i liked a couple, but as you can see from my review, i was expecting some better, felt and sounded like a rush job ^_^

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