I’ve always sort of pegged France’s Hacride as a ‘sister’ band of The Netherland’s Textures; both are angular jagged, Meshuggah inspired bands, that are good at what they do. However, while in my opinion Textures took a step back with Drawing Circles, Hacride have stepped way up with their impressive second album, Amoeba.

What sets Amoeba apart from Textures and improves from their solid if unremarkable debut Deviant Current Signal, is the sheer variety and delivery of the material. While most certainly still deep in the school of heaving Meshuggah-ish quirkiness and stuttering polyrhythms, Hacride’s song writing energizes an otherwise tiresome and often unlistenable genre with its deep yet listenable complexity.

From the expected angular, staggering jabs (“Perturbed” and at some point most of the tracks) to blistering blast beats (standout “Fate”, “Cycle”), to heaving, epic, almost tech death experimentation (“Vision of Hate”, “Digged of Soul” and the excellent “On The Threshold of Death”), shimmering interludes (“Liquid”, “Ultima Necat”), and even a cover of the Spanish contemporary flamenco band Ojos de Brujo’s “Zambra” (which brought to mind Sepultura’s “Ratamahatta” or even Soulfly’s more tribal material), the album is never content to simply slide into one rut, groove or style. The dense yet clear production mimics the material in its intelligent yet oppressive brawn that often amazes never bores, despite its weighty intricacy.

If you looking for an excellent album, slightly off the beaten path, but with an absorbable sense of terse complexity, Amoeba will deliver a surprising album of eloquent heft that might crawl onto a few year end lists should it get enough exposure and coverage.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
April 11th, 2007


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