For Fans Of
To say I was hanging to hear this record would be an understatement.
In 2003 a friend of mine was lucky enough to see Misery Signals play in the US. Upon returning to Australia I was presented with a copy of their debut EP and my life changed. You see, the first Misery Signals EP was so perfect that it forever raised the benchmark for what a heavy CD should encompass. It was brutal, but it was melodic at the same time. The lyrics were intelligent and screamed with such passion that it was almost a shock to the system.
In 2005 the band released Of Malice And The Magnum Heart, an album which was like a nuclear assault (aided by the production talents of one Devin Townsend). This brings us to 2006 and the release of Misery Signals new album, Mirrors.
First up, there’s been a change in the vocal department. While some people would argue that replacing a hardcore vocalist isn’t a big deal given that they are simply screaming I disagree. Ex-singer Jesse’s lyrics and venom fuelled scream played a pivotal role in the Misery Signals sound. While new front man Karl is as tough as they come, his range is somewhat limited compared to his predecessor.
Don’t be deterred by the above passage as the trademark MS elements are still there. The band still churns out breakdowns of such epic proportions that Meshuggah would give them 2 thumbs up and the ambient instrumentation on show gives the album a consistency that many bands spend a life time trying to create.
As a whole, the album flows extremely well and is definitely one of those CD’s where you need to listen to the whole thing – rather than just listening for a “single”.
If I have one criticism of this CD it’s the production. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still a great sounding album. It kicks in all the right places and all the instruments have room to breathe but knowing how intense their debut album sounds (again, courtesy of the almighty Devin Townsend) any other producer simply isn’t going to cut it.
After saying all that Mirrors is still going to make my top 5 records of the year – as it should for everyone!
1. “Face Yourself” – 4:51
2. “The Failsafe” – 5:21
3. “Post Collapse” – 3:59
4. “Migrate” – 2:29
5. “One Day I’ll Stay Home” – 4:05