I've been saying for ages that hardcore is dying back like a plant that has grown too big for its root system, well I've been saying it's dying, the plant thing I just made up now, but it fits. I and everyone I know are sick of bands shouting for one and half minutes over a backing noise with the melody of a rubbish crusher. Soon the old fashioned hard core bands that haven't evolved will go back to the underground scene where they came from supported by the people that still care. The roots if you will.
I have no idea whether Machine Made God (great name) used to be a hardcore band or not but their sound is what hardcore needs to evolve into to survive at all. This album has the hardcore vocals interspersed with clean but without sounding like a Killswitch engage rip off. This has brutal crushing guitars that bring memories of Demanufacture era Fear Factory, this combined with trip hammer drumming creates an album that you can't ignore.
I put it on in the background when I first got it whilst I was doing something else. I wasn't listening really but even then my ears pricked up, I have an inbuilt quality detector and this album had set it off without me even listening properly, once I did give it the attention it deserved it rewarded me with a seriously good album, crushing and heavy in places to make you nod your head and pull a face that feels metal but probably looks constipated.
Then in comes the melodies, right out of left field and while they don't exactly take you by surprise, let's face it growl, clean, growl vocals aren't exactly a new invention, they do remind you that when done right they still work to open up an album onto another level. This is helped in no small part by the production which while not top of the range is certainly plenty good enough to let you hear everything that is going on and packs a punch like a sledgehammer.
If you like your metal uncompromisingly brutal yet laced with enough melody to stop it all sounding the same then this is for you, highlights for me were 'Voices', 'Place Taken' and 'Endlessly' I love the bass drum and guitar combo on 'Endlessly' it's just so metal you want to do impossibly large chords on your air guitar and pull that face again. Recommended.