American Metal Can Still Reign SupremeMay 10th, 2011 by Sharkchild
Ever since the Gothenburg scene began just before the 21st century, I have had a hard time finding heavy, riveting, melody-strewn American metal that lived up to my new expectations—with the exception of a couple bands (Nevermore, Killswitch Engage). But when I came across Machine Head’s The Blackening, and listened to the tracks, a wonderful smile came upon my face. With the Gothenburg babies (In Flames, Soilwork) fading into more commercial mush these days, it was refreshing to find a band that stayed true to their roots in their latter work–unafraid to keep the solos long and brutality harsh. And even among the heaviness I love, Machine Head perfectly laced their tracks with melody, causing their haunting choruses to become drugs.
This album is worth every penny in the headbanger’s pocket. Do not think twice.
The songs most notable to me are Beautiful Mourning, Now I Lay Thee Down, and Halo.
My only disappointment in this album was the onslaught of profanity; too much is never a good thing. Profanity, for me, does not equal artistry.