One of my favorite feelings is when you pick a random album and it turns out to be awesome. No expectations going in except perhaps cover art or a sticker on the front, pop the album into your stereo and just get blown away. MNEMIC’s debut release, “Mechanical Spin Phenomena”, did just exactly that to me.
I originally saw a little ad for the album that stated beside the cover ‘For fans of FEAR FACTORY’ and I decided to pick it up. To say it’s similar to the influential FEAR FACTORY is somewhat close – MNEMIC does play around with plenty of Industrial elements and their intense use of rhythms is comparable, but quite frankly the focus is almost completely different.
MNEMIC takes Modern Metal and gives it a knee to the groin. “Mechanical Spin Phenomena” is full of great energy and amazing musicianship. Although I’ve heard many people refer to them as too ‘core’ to even be considered Metal, this band is some of the best Modern Metal I’ve ever heard. And the syncopated rhythms and vicious riffs that the band blast out would agree. Stellar drum work and the odd song structures blend well with the over crisp modern production values to heighten the pounding beats and massive guitar lines. Vocalist Michael Břgballe delivers sinister roars and barks (not to mention some great synthesized work too that matches up with some of the singing he does) that throw the band over the top and into the stratosphere. Most of the melody on the album can be attributed to the vocal work and synthesizers that accompany the music but this album is better as a blunt instrument with the music.
I absolutely adore this album and its quirky song writing structures and amazing performances. Definitely not for the average Metalhead but fans of MESHUGGAH or STRAPPING YOUNG LAD are going to find some elements to enjoy on the album. It’s an amazing blend of great Modern elements that make this work. For an album this is great but for a debut from an unheard of band this is fucking awesome. Whether it’s the catchiness of the opening track or the brutality of “Db’xx’d” (that stands for double crossed for those of you who don’t know) this album is great from beginning to end.
Songs to check out: “Liquid”, “Ghost”, “Db’xx’d”.
(Online October 29, 2008)