Machine Head “Catharsis”

Aside from the Robb Flynn spotlight, Machine Head has endured a long, endearing career in the metal community. On their ninth record, the band tries to cross the finish line with their reputation in tact and add another few hits to their live performance. While the band has ranged from a variety of  approaches in sound from their debut on each record, Catharsis is more like a Supercharger of sorts sulking in Nu-Metal tendencies that lets fans of the band decide if the act is going to catapult their acclaim or just meander off into the side roads of legacy and nostalgia acts.
     As far as the record is concerned, it’s certainly a lingerer. Tracks run over five minutes across a fifteen track roster, letting the album cross the seventy minute mark. This showcases piss poor editing, as none of these tracks develop to Between The Buried And Me or Devin Townsend acclaim, where they couldn’t have been slightly drawn back. Also, the Corey Taylor from Slipknot approach that litters many of the verses shows Robb creatively frustrated, whether he’ll admit it or not, tip toeing on nursery rhyme foolishness not heard since early Korn. Childish lyrics often plague each song, making the music as cringe worthy as can be. There’s djent influences thrown about which don’t play well on the band’s tones, and many highlights are plagued by huge pitfalls which make the overall record a forgettable disappointment.
     Although it’s clear the band felt like they just needed another record out, Catharsis is a sloppy meandering for a band that’s struggled with their identity since their inception. This record deters the band’s accomplishments on the past four records that seemed to distance them from their carnival days, but perhaps those childish tendencies are just what makes Machine Head unique. Either way, longtime fans of the band will swallow the act’s current identity and show loyalty, because to the untrained, common metal ear, this is just another Trivium record.

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