Sunday, December 23, 2007

MUSHROOMHEAD: (2001) XX @256k

No one will accuse Mushroomhead of not having an intriguing image; on stage, most of its members wear black masks that look like a cross between S&M/bondage masks and World War I-style gas masks. The exception is the member who wears Kiss-like clown makeup instead. Mushroomhead's unusual look is definitely an attention getter, but having an interesting image wouldn't mean much if the Cleveland band didn't have some worthwhile music to go with it. Thankfully, Mushroomhead's music is as creative as its image; XX, in fact, is among the most ambitious alternative metal releases of 2001. Far from generic, this CD successfully fuses alt-metal with everything from hip-hop, punk, and goth rock to industrial and techno. Plenty of headbangers have jumped on the rap-metal bandwagon, but how many metal bands that incorporate a lot of rapping also incorporate goth, industrial, and techno elements? At times, XX almost sounds like Rage Against the Machine meets Ministry by way of Bauhaus -- with some techno/rave exuberance added to the mix. That isn't exactly the most conventional mixture in the world, and the nice thing is that Mushroomhead's experimentation always sounds organic rather than forced or unnatural. Anyone who is seeking something fresh and risk-taking from alternative metal should make a point of hearing this superb CD. ----- by Alex Henderson, All Music Guide

1. Before I Die
2. Bwomp
3. Solitaire/Unraveling
4. These Filthy Hands
5. Never Let It Go
6. Xeroxed
7. The Wrist
8. Chancre Sore
9. The New Cult King
10. Empty Spaces
11. Born of Desire
12. 43
13. Fear Held Dear
14. Too Much Nothing
15. Episode 29
16. Bwomp Part.2

pass = heavymetalbreed

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