Sound — 9
This album's sound all in all is a clear reminder to Machine Head's "The Blackening" that won album of the decade and most definitely deserved it for their efforts. machine Head aren't my favourite band but from the past three albums that the band have produced, it has been a real eye opener to the music writing skill and capability this band has. 01. "I Am Hell (Sonata In C#)": So as this song is in three separate parts: "Sangre Sani (Blood Saint)", "I Am Hell" & "Ashes To The Sky". Part 1: I think it's quite a strange intro to the album but it's a strange, eerie kind of intro that surprises the listener. But when the Muted, gallop type, distorted guitar part comes in, it's the kind of thing that reminds you that "This is Machine Head" (No "Sparta" joke intended xD) Part 2: As McClain kicks in to "I Am Hell", you begin to realise that the song is not a slow song as you would have interpreted from the first part but it has quickly become an over paced, speedy metal track. When the song reaches 2:23, personally I think McClain could have picked a better, cleaner sounding cymbal to smash up, but others might approve to what is already done. This part being the main bridge in the three parter, it really does keep the entire song together as a whole Part 3: When the song jumps from the breakdown in I am Hell to the acoustic interlude in "Ashes To The Sky", you instantly feel another breakdown about to come in and you can hear the clarity in the guitar. I think Phil and Robb have really done well on this song with guitar structuring and intellect they have pulled out yet again. 02. "Be Still And Know": It's not my favourite song from the album but it's not bad, but I must say the guitar violining in the background of the intro must be one of Machine. 03. "Locust": Pretty much being the album title, it gives the album the good name it deserves. I love the little drum solo McClain does when bridging the intro to the main riff. I also think the little bass solo in the main riff is pretty sweet too. This song varies in a lot of different instrument techniques. If a band was to cover this song, I think it would help improve the bands part switching capability. I also think all of the different solos would be fun to perform as a band. 04. "This Is The End": I love the Acoustic intro to this song. It's really welcoming and then the electric guitar harmonies fading in really textures the song. Then as the drums kick in and the tremolo picking riff begins it really defines the title, "This Is The End". 05. "Darkness Within": The acoustic intro, yet again gives the song real depth and feeling, and lyrically, this song is amazing. All in all, amazing through and through. A Machine Head tune to remember. 06. "Pearls Before The Swine": I'm not too keen on this song, but if I'm in a mood where I want to hurt someone and I'm pissed off, it's the right song, maybe not lyrically but definitely riff wise. 07. "Who We Are": A song that gives me the feeling it's a song dedicated to the fans to stay true and not to change for anyone regardless of what they want. A really nice intro and I love how Flynn kicks in with the aggressive vocals to make the song a little more Machineyer.
Lyrics — 9
I Don't really have much to say about each individual songs lyrics... Other than they're awesome as per usual. I think it's brilliant how Robb asked his kids to sing for the intro to "Who We Are". Overall lyrics wise, I love everything about this album. The structure of the complex words is outstanding.
Overall Impression — 9
If you haven't bought this album yet, what are you waiting for? A Machine Head album to remember and love. Any Machine Head fan SHOULD instantly fall in love with this album, but if you don't find it suits your taste to the old stuff then it's your personal opinion really. But in my opinion, it's a must have from MH.