Art Metal? More like monotonous metal!
Well, when you read on the back cover that this is an example of "French art-metal underground" then you are immediately on to a loser really aren't you? Now we English have often had a bit of a tiff with the French - poking fun here and there - but this record certainly does not do our French relations any favours. The "art" in the title certainly evokes an "uh-oh" feeling. You know what I mean. Its almost as bad as the phrase "prog-rock" or the like. We all know the stereotypes. Overly pretentious, ego fulfilling (but not in a Scott Weiland kind of way), self-indulgent and generally boring.
Sludge. Yes, the word on the back of the sleeve certainly seems to describe this one rather well. The tracks are rather long and somewhat repetitive. There is an overall feeling of trudging through waist deep cement, although rather furiously, and as such, you just end up feeling tired. No one song seems to stand out on this record and I suspect that's the point. Since when did it become necessary to make these kinds of songs to promote "art". Isn't all music an art? Well, this certainly isn't music. It's more of a collection of ambience, heavy riffs and even more ambience, with a little synth thrown over the top. I can't really say that it's even that heavy. Sure, there are bits here and there but the fury that is metal is missing. Some die hard rockers and old-skool music types might write off bands such as Lamb of God and the like for not really having much of a tune, and they'd have a slight point, but this band doesn't seem to have any at all.
But that doesn't quite make it chill-out. The metal-ness seems to detract from that, and the repetitive beats just seem to annoy. That's not to say this album really grates, because it doesn't. It drones. Yup, you'll hear the drones for days to come after hearing this record just the once. It might sound like I have a chip on my shoulder about this record but I'm really rather apathetic which isn't what most people want from their music really. I suspect, if one was throwing a sort of metal-esque dinner party, this album might go down reasonably well. If you like drone, indecipherable and pointless lyrics and, granted, rather good heavy guitar work (if very boring and overly repetitive riffs) then you'll like this.