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Old 02-15-2009, 05:26 AM   #111 (permalink)
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So, what do we have here? 40 odd minutes of noisy-rock. Noise-rock can be a funny genre. Some of it tends to be pure noise and inaccessible (the Japanese are masters of this , although they do have the accessible stuff as well) but a lot do tend to be accessible. The latter definitely applies here. The roots go back to the 60s, with the emergence of proto-punk. A lot of bands started experimenting, but it never really had a name back then. Then there's the late 70s/80s post-punk movement, which gave birth to a lot of noisy bands. The Japanese always had an element of surprise. This though, to me, sounds like a rehearsal and wee bit derivative.

Still, not to be deterred, I shall move on. To its defense, the musicianship displayed here was solid with very few tracks I strait out hated. It's dirty, and the vocals perfectly support this. It's 'Made In Mexico' for a reason . I think they did a good job at this 'rehearsal' and fans of noise-rock will surely like this. A bit more modern sound does save it a little bit. But to me, it gets boring after a few listens and a bit repetitive at times. The intensity was maintained, but I found that only for the first listen. Gradually, as I lost interest, even the intense parts were boring.

'Untitled' kicks this off, with a short acoustic introduction followed by a frantic guitar/drums attack. The vocals kick in mid way through and as I said earlier, it fits the music very well. This seemed quite interesting on my first listen. Similarly, tracks such as 'Monster In Time' and 'International Zombie' continue in similar passion, pounding this wall of noise into our ears. If you liked the first track, the entire album should be enjoyable. I however, found it hard to sit through the entire thing during my 3rd/4th listen. It really did get a bit bland and repetitive. Same old riffs; strait-forward noisy stuff! A bit more variety would have helped in my case, but as of now, it gets a 5.5/10. I didn't seem to enjoy it as much as the others so far in this thread .
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Old 02-15-2009, 07:51 PM   #112 (permalink)
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Made in Mexico - Zodiac Zoo

Righto, noise rock is much more of my thing than the last album I picked up from this thread so I was looking forward to it. And overall I think it's a good album, but very unexceptional.

It gets off to a good start with Untitled, I like the short build up with the acoustic, and when the dirty churning riffs kick in the energy is good. The beat is excellent and backing choir is a nice textural touch.

But from here it's a pretty flat ride, not that the quality goes down, in fact it probably picks up a notch. But it is a very repetitive album, they need to play around more. A lot of sections devolve into some hypnotic droning oblibion, which saps intensity from the more energetic moments.
For example, Clockwork starts out great, but when the quivering guitar and low key vocals kicked in it was fairly forgettable, they just went on for too long. And then for some reason they used the same guitar style on Occam's Razor which comes right after, thankfully the bass really managed to save it.

On the plus side the vocals are perfectly suited to the music, and partly because of the repetition there weren't any sections that I actually disliked.

6.5/10
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Old 02-17-2009, 05:38 PM   #113 (permalink)
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Made In Mexico:

This album frustrates me. It's not bad by any means, i love the tense feel it has throughout and the singer's voice is great. The nagging feeling for me though is that there should be more to it, the music feels like it's on a cliffedge and is about to fall and all chaos will ensue but it ever really happens. Songs like Occam's Razor and International Zombie are cool, with great basslines and the guitar is just hovering there and i just want them to blast out into the noise they're working up to but they never really do.

That said its making me curious. I've listened to it twice now and i don't want to delete it, i think i'll probably keep going at it and maybe it'll click.
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Old 02-18-2009, 01:40 AM   #114 (permalink)
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I've listened to it twice now and i don't want to delete it, i think i'll probably keep going at it and maybe it'll click.
My review later in the week but I have listened to it 4 times now and it is a grower. Click is the word.
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Old 02-18-2009, 07:53 AM   #115 (permalink)
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It has that feel to it, reminds me of listening to the likes of Shellac for the first time.
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Old 02-19-2009, 03:34 PM   #116 (permalink)
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Damn, and I was determined to hate this album more than anyone else :|

I first heard Made in Mexico in the first Guitar Hero game. The track was called Farewell Myth, but you all know it as Untitled. I thought it was ok, just not my cup of tea, probably because it's the only MiM song that could ever be considered GH material. Of course in the 2nd GH game they had Yes We Can, and sounding like most of their other material, it was an awful choice for Guitar Hero (as most noise rock is). So I just wrote it off as an abysmal band and went on my way.

Fast forward 2 years, and I promised myself I would review the next album in this thread, which turned out to be Zodiac Zoo. I was saddened, but I begrudgingly asked for the upload.

It was an interesting first listen. Untitled, as I'd heard it before, was the most musical track on the album IMO, and the easiest to get into. I was expecting it to be the best on the album.

Then Infrared Eyes came on, and as most first listeners of noise rock might be, I was taken aback by all the useless noises I thought I was hearing, and the crazy vocals. Halfway through the track it clicked, and I felt that one was better than the first. I listened to the rest of the album and figured it deserved about a 5/10, but I knew I wouldn't get it fully til the 2nd listen. There's a few things I like about this album, let's start with vocals. They are very unorthodox, coming in at seemingly random times and almost never actually singing notes. I love her screams, especially at the start of Napalm Spring. They completely add to the assault on the ears the guitar is performing. The lyrics are very minimalist, at least the ones I heard, so I doubt there's any major premises to be gotten from them. I noticed that the guitar, bass, and drums all have balanced audio, it works well for the band's sound.

So after two listens, I give it a 7/10, and the higlights for me were Untitled, Infrared Eyes, Ultraviolet Arms, and Face of the Earth. Would've been 7.5 if they switched the last two tracks, Black Rabbit was not a good way to end that strong album.
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Old 02-19-2009, 03:38 PM   #117 (permalink)
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You will have to move onto some Melt Banana next then! Glad you are getting into it!
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Old 02-20-2009, 01:57 PM   #118 (permalink)
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You will have to move onto some Melt Banana next then!!
Looking forward to that! :-) The crazy band from Japan right?
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Old 02-20-2009, 02:11 PM   #119 (permalink)
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Send Me This!
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Old 02-20-2009, 04:24 PM   #120 (permalink)
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Me II.
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