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Meshuggah - CD
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Buy it! It really is that simple. If you're a Meshuggah fan this is a no brainer. I've loved this band for years, but when I first heard the leaked tracks from this album I wasn't entirely convinced. Well, shame on me. This truly is a fantastic album. It's somewhat of a grower, as each track ebbs and flows with an organic quality of its own, each showcasing its own distinct character, demanding attention as it grooves and twists its way into the psyche. Tracks like "Behind The Sun", "Swarm" and "Demiurge" are as brutally heavy as they are addictively infectious. I honestly cannot recommend this album enough.
Inception: Original Soundtrack
Hans Zimmer - CD
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German composer Hans Zimmer brings us the soundtrack to easily one of the best films of 2010, "Inception", and once again displays why so many regard him as a modern day musical genius.
Zimmer's true brilliance lies in his ability to create music that perfectly compliments the subject matter, in this case, the manipulation of dreams and what takes place within them. The soundtrack is suitably filled with atmospheric twists and turns, from the grandiose "Mombasa" and "Dream Within A Dream", to haunting pieces such as "Old Souls" and "Paradox".
As surreal as it is epic, this is a fantastic soundtrack to a fantastic film. Both are a dream come true, so don't miss either!
Periphery - CD
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Well it's been a few years in the making, but Periphery have finally released a full length album, and it's been well worth the wait. Misha "Bulb" Mansoor and co wear their influences on their sleeves, and if you're a fan of bands like SikTh and Meshuggah you're almost guaranteed to like what you hear.
Tracks such as "Jetpacks Was Yes!" and "All New Materials" showcase a great combination of melody with downtuned metal madness, whilst the groove laden insanity of "Zyglrox" and personal favourite "Racecar" are more than enough to silence any potential critic.
The only issue I have is that occasionally some of the "djenty" riffs are a little forgettable when buried under various layers of guitar, but this is a very minor gripe, and the vast majority of the album packs an addictive punch that will keep you going back for more!
Nothing (With Bonus DVD)
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Meshuggah have spent years crafting complex music that almost sounds effortless, and this album is a perfect display of exactly that. As straightforward and accessible as it is mind-bending and polyrhythmic, this re-recorded version of "Nothing" is simply a must have for any fan of the band. Not only have the guitars been re-tracked to draw more attention to the already crushingly heavy riffs and hooks, but the whole sound of the album has been refined. Personal favourites like "Straws Pulled At Random" and "Rational Gaze" really highlight why the band felt the urge to re-record these fantastic tracks. The guitar tone and mix simply blows away the original release.
The bonus disc is also a nice little extra, featuring their 2005 performance at Download Festival (which incidentally I was actually in the front row for). Even if you do own the original version of "Nothing", I would still highly recommend picking up a copy of this. You wont regret it!
Killswitch Engage - CD
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Killswitch Engage are indeed a great band. "Alive Or Just Breathing" was a fantastic record and they've been perfecting their trademark sound ever since its release. But in a way, that's partly the problem with this latest release. The songs on this disc, while still fun and as catchy as ever, are just too predictable and samey for my liking. Tracks like "Lost" and "Take Me Away" stand out by offering up a bit more variety, but sadly the majority of this latest offering is simply Killswitch by numbers.
For what it is the album is perfectly enjoyable, and certainly worth adding to the collection if you're a long time fan of the band, it's just a bit of a shame that we've heard it all before.
Oz: Season 5
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Season 5 of Oz seems a little disappointing after being treated to 16 razor-sharp episodes in season 4, and whilst these 8 episodes don't quite amount to the best season, it's still excellent, brutal, gripping and undeniably Oz, and is obviously a must have purchase for anyone who owns the other dvd's.