Machine Head - The Blackening review



Reviewer:
10

920 users:
8.81
Band: Machine Head
Album: The Blackening
Release date: March 2007


Disc I
01. Clenching The Fists Of Dissent
02. Beautiful Mourning
03. Aesthetics Of Hate
04. Now I Lay Thee Down
05. Slanderous
06. Halo
07. Wolves
08. A Farewell To Arms
09. Hallowed Be Thy Name [Iron Maiden cover] [bonus]
10. Battery [Metallica cover] [bonus]

Disc II [Special Edition Bonus CD - B-Sides/Rarities 1994-2008]
01. Hallowed Be Thy Name [Iron Maiden cover]
02. Alan's On Fire [Poison Idea cover]
03. Negative Creep [Nirvana cover]
04. Seasons Wither
05. My Misery
06. House Of Suffering [Bad Brains cover]
07. The Possibility Of Life's Destruction [Discharge cover]
08. Ten Ton Hammer (Extended Original Mix)
09. Hole In The Sky [Black Sabbath cover]
10. Colors [Ice-T cover]
11. Hard Times [Cro-Mags cover] [live]
12. Halo (I Want Your Soul) [demo 2005 version]
13. Aesthetics Of Hate (Thrash-terpiece) [demo 2005 version]


Disc III [Special Edition DVD]
01. Clenching The Fists Of Dissent [Live With Full Force 2008]
02. Now I Lay Thee Down [Live With Full Force 2008]
03. Halo [Live With Full Force 2008]
04. Aesthetics Of Hate [Live Rock In Rio 2008]
05. Davidian [Live Rock In Rio 2008]
06. Imperium [Live Download 2007]
07. Old [Live Download 2007]
08. A Thousand Lies [Live Burn My Eyes 10th Anniversary 2004]
09. The Rage To Overcome [Live Burn My Eyes 10th Anniversary 2004]
10. Death Church [Live Burn My Eyes 10th Anniversary 2004]
11. Blood For Blood [Live Burn My Eyes 10th Anniversary 2004]
+ Halo [video]
+ Now I Lay Thee Down [video]
+ Aesthetics Of Hate [video]
+ Making Of Feature For Each Video


I absolutely hate hearing people say that whenever they hear an awesome album, they think it's the greatest thing ever to come since sliced bread, and the fact the people consider something perfect is complete crap. This is what bothers me the most about Machine Head and The Blackening: it may very well be the greatest thrash album ever created in this generation (meaning the 2000s only of course).

From start to finish, this album has the right amount of melody, technicality, thrash and most importantly, drive! After coming off of the pretty shitty Supercharger and then leading off with the groove metal built Through the Ashes of Empires, Robb Flynn and the rest of Machine Head comeback to show us why this album kicks SO much ass! Opening with "Clenching the Fists of Dissent," the cleanliness of the intro to that crunchy riff thrash metal fans love, that song unlocks many good things to come. "Aesthetics of Hate" (better known as the best Dimebag tribute so far) has got such a powerful drive to it that when listened to, you can only say one thing: FUCK. YOU. Other than that, you got some pretty great lyrics on how societies portray one another ("Slanderous," "Now I Lay Thee Down"), to primal thrash metal songs that will surely kill you in your sleep.

I don't even want to begin to describe how well the quality of this album was made. With every note, pluck, snare, tom, anything else you could think of, you'll hear it. Any time a chant, scream, growl, or harmony comes out of Robb Flynn or the guests of chanting people, you'll hear it. For musicianship, Phil Demmel's and Robb Flynn's guitar work is primal. The leads are inspiring as ever and have that 80s feel, yet still attract the new generation of metal heads. Solo works are just as good, too, even though some solos on this album I wished for Flynn to play out of preference. However, I can't really say the same for Adam Duce (bassist) and Dave McClain (drummer). Duce hasn't really had any prominent tracks on this album (try the chorus to "Halo," his only standout so far) and hasn't really shown his true potential since The More Things Change. Same goes for McClain (who I believe doesn't even HAVE a prominent track on this album, only "Imperium" on Through the Ashes of Empires).

Last thing about this album that attracts me so well is the ten minute closer, "A Farewell To Arms," which was done extremely well (only other time I can consider a 10+ minute closer fantastic; Evile and their song "Hundred Wrathful Deities"). A song that starts out melodically, ends with a ripping thrash energy that will make even the Big Four proud. Even the solo is indescribable, from Flynn's cue to Demmel's shredding, headbanging will be the one thing you CAN'T stop doing!

Thanks a lot Machine Head. When I thought there couldn't be such thing as a "perfect" something, you proved me wrong. Get this album now or else you have a lot of explaining to do.


Rating breakdown
Performance: 10
Songwriting: 10
Originality: 10
Production: 10

Written by ProjectEndgame | 12.11.2010


 


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

Guest review by
BurbotsRevenge
Rating:
9.3
Who said Thrash was on its way out? From the first listen, the first riff of 'Clenching The Fists Of Dissent', you could tell that this was not so. Since Machine Head's début, 'Burn My Eyes' in 1994, they have done what they do best. Playing top-notch Thrash Metal. And their latest effort 'The Blackening' is definitely their best release so far.

Read more ››
published 27.11.2007 | Comments (43)

Guest review by
AndMetalForAll
Rating:
9.5
Finally... Machine Head released an album in 2007 after four years of absence. Although not one of the biggest metal bands of the last 20 years (at that time), The Blackening was one of the most expected albums by all the fans or non-fans of the band. In my opinion, most of the fans wanted to see the direction the band was going to take. Machine Head had different styles through the years since their formation. In the entire album, one thing I have to say and honor is the outstanding performance of the band but mainly by Rob Flynn, finally he got a grip on his life, learned how to play guitar really well (before he almost never made a solo, in this album he makes solos in most of the songs), changed his life and that reflects in the entire album and his performance.

Read more ››
published 02.12.2011 | Comments (3)


Comments

Comments: 10   Visited by: 203 users
12.11.2010 - 17:14
Zombie
Thrash'tillDeath
Agreed on the overall idea, but not the details.. for example, i wouldnt consider this 'the best thrash metal album of this generation', nor would i give it a perfect 10/10 in all aspects like you kindly did.

but i have to say that it is a pretty damn good album, that does not get alot of praise, and everybody goes along with saying that MH never released anything good after "Burn my eyes", which was true until the release of this album, i personally believe it to be Machine Head's second best album, and a great album overall, but far from being the 'Best ever", u know what i'm sayin, homes ?

btw, mods are getting soft these days , i remember once i posted a review with the word 'fag' in it and they had it removed, but now 'FUCK YOU" is allowed ? .. cool !!
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Johann Wolfgang van Goethe 1749-1832
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13.11.2010 - 22:40
Axe Argonian
While The Blackening is a pretty good album and Machine Head's best work of recent years, I don't agree with the perfect "10" rating. Not many albums deserve a "10", because everything in the realm of entertainment has a flaw or something that holds it back from perfection.
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"Man does at all times only what he wills, and yet he does this necessarily. But this is because he already is what he wills." - Arthur Schopenhauer
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15.11.2010 - 18:51
vezzy
Stallmanite
On the other hand, this album is drastically overpraised, IMO. Best thrash album of the 2000s is ludicrous. It's decent, but not that amazing.
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Relinquish proprietary software for a greater GNU/America.
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15.11.2010 - 22:57
ProjectEndgame
Account deleted
Written by vezzy on 15.11.2010 at 18:51

On the other hand, this album is drastically overpraised, IMO. Best thrash album of the 2000s is ludicrous. It's decent, but not that amazing.

Excuse me for that. I was REALLY impressed with the album (not that it was worth being deserved the title of the new age Master of Puppets.) and I was excited for it, so yeah the praise I give is a bit ludicrous.
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06.06.2011 - 06:16
godisdead
Written by vezzy on 15.11.2010 at 18:51

On the other hand, this album is drastically overpraised, IMO. Best thrash album of the 2000s is ludicrous. It's decent, but not that amazing.

This was a great album. Maybe overpraised but it was still amazing.
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06.06.2011 - 14:00
Troy Killjoy
perfunctionist
This was a decent thrash album with some decent progressive elements, nothing more. I'm with Vezzy on this one; no way does this take "best thrash album" of the 2000s. After the first song it becomes somewhat of a snoozefest - basically Opeth trying their hand at thrash.
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Prettier than BloodTears.
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01.11.2012 - 09:07
coolcritic89
Written by Troy Killjoy on 06.06.2011 at 14:00

This was a decent thrash album with some decent progressive elements, nothing more. I'm with Vezzy on this one; no way does this take "best thrash album" of the 2000s. After the first song it becomes somewhat of a snoozefest - basically Opeth trying their hand at thrash.


lol get the fuck out! besides testament's formation of damnation, could u actually name another thrash album that is better than the blackening that came out in the 2000s? i bet u cant

also, your musical taste must be boring to believe this album (or opeth for that matter) is a snoozefest. i take this over any of the "supposedly better thrash albums" of the 21st centurty that u can think of
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01.11.2012 - 09:31
Marcel Hubregtse
Grumpy Old Fuck
Written by coolcritic89 on 01.11.2012 at 09:07


lol get the fuck out! besides testament's formation of damnation, could u actually name another thrash album that is better than the blackening that came out in the 2000s? i bet u cant



Tempo Of The Damned easily surpasses this.
Even Black Future by Vektor does
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Member of the true crusade against European Flower Metal

Yesterday is dead and gone, tomorrow is out of sight
Dawn Crosby (r.i.p.)
05.04.1963 - 15.12.1996

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01.11.2012 - 09:37
Cynic Metalhead
Atrocious Virgin
Written by coolcritic89 on 01.11.2012 at 09:07

Written by Troy Killjoy on 06.06.2011 at 14:00

This was a decent thrash album with some decent progressive elements, nothing more. I'm with Vezzy on this one; no way does this take "best thrash album" of the 2000s. After the first song it becomes somewhat of a snoozefest - basically Opeth trying their hand at thrash.


lol get the fuck out! besides testament's formation of damnation, could u actually name another thrash album that is better than the blackening that came out in the 2000s? i bet u cant


Your favorite doesn't mean everyone's favorite folk( considering my favorite thrash album of 2000). There are lot of thrash records that is way better than "Blackening" but I won't deny the fact that it's been overpraised. This album came out when Nu Metal scene was ruling and i guess when they cut the scene with this incredible record...people overjoyed it like anything. Machine's best record out of their catalog but not certainly THE BEST THRASH ALBUM OF 2000.
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01.11.2012 - 09:55
Marcel Hubregtse
Grumpy Old Fuck
Written by Cynic Metalhead on 01.11.2012 at 09:37


Your favorite doesn't mean everyone's favorite folk( considering my favorite thrash album of 2000). There are lot of thrash records that is way better than "Blackening" but I won't deny the fact that it's been overpraised. This album came out when Nu Metal scene was ruling and i guess when they cut the scene with this incredible record...people overjoyed it like anything. Machine's best record out of their catalog but not certainly THE BEST THRASH ALBUM OF 2000.


Nu metal did not rule in 2007, and Burn My Eyes is far far better than The Blackening
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Member of the true crusade against European Flower Metal

Yesterday is dead and gone, tomorrow is out of sight
Dawn Crosby (r.i.p.)
05.04.1963 - 15.12.1996

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