Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Mephistopheles (Australia): “Sounds of the End” (Willowtip Records)

Mephistopheles (Australia): “Sounds of the End” (Willowtip Records)
The first impression might be “brutal death metal,” and while the growling/screaming and heaviness may further support that thesis, the realities of the sound complicate things.
The guitar sounds very little like death metal, despite the low tuning. Really, the guitar sounds very little like norm-restricted metal, period. Is this jazz, prog and math guitar played in a heavy way? Mephistopheles is no “easy listening” experience. It’s a puzzle of heavy and technical jazzy math growl metal. Sometimes the music goes fast. Correction, make that: blasting fast. Just as likely, the drummer sounds like he’s doing a drum solo, inside of a bigger composition.
Maybe the audience is the “brutal death metal” listeners, but anyone who likes dissonant and twisted songwriting will enjoy the band’s refusal to comply with strict rules by making off-putting, brainiac fast experimental metal.
Shouldn’t Voivod listeners enjoy something like Mephistopheles? If a person wants more than linear, predictable songs, then Mephistopheles would be one band to look into for something a bit different.

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