Meshuggah – ObZen

Have you ever listened to your washing machine or lawnmower motor run and somewhat discern some type of mathematical pattern? Convert the sounds to electric guitar and drums and you basically get Meshuggah. I do not listen to very much metal like this, so I may not be the best to describe this. Now for some music theory description that I do not understand: according to an interview with the band, Meshuggah typically employs a 4/4 time signature for the drums by Tomas Haake, while the rest of the instruments each follow different time signatures, but eventually converging on the 4/4 drum beat. I do not really understand what this means, but perhaps this helps explain the seeming mathematical sound of the music. Meshuggah is quite a heavy band and this is definitely the case for the Swedish outfits’ sixth studio album, ObZen. Vocalist Jens Kidman utilizes strictly guttural death metal vocals. Drummer Tomas Haake is renowned for his drumming style, especially on the song, Bleed. Guitarists Fredrik Thordendal and Mårten Hagström play their guitars in a mathematical way with odd time signatures. Each of the songs are solid on this album, with Bleed being my favorite. As with many death metal albums, I tend to get bored over the course of an album, and this is sometimes the case with this album as the sound can get monotonous. Meshuggah was basically the pioneer of the djent subgenre and they continue to hone this sound with this release.

Genre: Progressive Metal, Technical Death Metal
Country: Sweden
Label: Nuclear Blast
Release: March 7, 2008

1. Combustion
2. Electric Red
3. Bleed
4. Lethargica
5. ObZen
6. This Spiteful Snake
7. Pineal Gland Optics
8. Pravus
9. Dancers To A Discordant System

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