Mechina
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Mechina

Batavia, Illinois, United States | SELF

Batavia, Illinois, United States | SELF
Band Metal Avant-garde

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There was a supernova that engulfed the world of metal, and nobody saw it. Have you ever wondered what would happen if Fear Factory was backed by a full out orchestra incorporating electronic influences? I did at one point, and Mechina was my swift answer. Anyone who listened to their previous effort “Tyrannical Resurrection”, would know that the overused word “epic” is the central theme these guys pride themselves on. “Terminator 2: Judgement Day” comes to mind when listening to the awesome track “Assembly of tyrants”, as the mood is apocalyptic yet serene and still carries that catchy fear factory flavor. It encompasses the quiet intensity that avant-garde and progressive metal exemplifies.


With “Conqueror” the results are amplified as they took their previous album and redefined their atmosphere into something more tangible. Drums are relentless, choruses are soaring, guitars are AA guns and the atmosphere: enveloping. Imagine if Hans Zimmer was a head banging freak and decided to make a solo album. This would be his final product.


The album starts with the instrumental “Incipient Tragoedia”, that introduces the album for what it is: a journey. Gladiator immediately comes to mind with the emotional female vocals which leads into a foreboding atmosphere that makes us perceive the feeling of caution. That caution is blasted into the next song “Pray to the Winds”. From then on, the journey begins as an explosion of blast beats and orchestral bliss of biblical proportions start the album out with a proverbial big bang. The growling vocals by Holch are as if Galactus himself was screaming at the stars to split them apart.


The song brilliantly leads into “Anti Theist” , boasting a heavier atmosphere and a more intensified orchestral arrangement signifying the journey is entering an unforeseen conflict. This is where we experience Dave’s cleaner vocals which are filled with awe and authority, again, fear factory comes to mind. ”Non Serviam” Further demonstrates the band’s clean vocal prowess with purposefully repetitive choruses that ooze a triumphant atmosphere. The tracks which i consider to be perfect examples of Mechina's theme are “The Iron Law” and the title track ”Conqueror”, which both have this mental image of a spaceship dog fight taking place across the galaxy. For a metal band to achieve such a vision is an achievement in itself.


The only problem i can find with this album is that even though it is almost perfectly balanced, it is still on the short side. The title track “Conqueror”, though phenomenally well executed, ends as if it concluded at its bridge. Nevertheless, the power of this effort is undeniable. If one loves grandiose movie scores, foreboding atmospheres and relentless machine gun riffing and drumming, Mechina’s Conqueror is just that kind of fix. This movie better have a sequel. - Encyclopedia Metallum


Band: Mechina
Country: Batavai, Illinois
Style: Industrial Black Metal
Label: Independent

It's been six years since Mechina's first full-length album, "The Assembly of Tyrants," was first released, and although the "Tyrannical Resurrection" EP was released back in 2007, it had no new material on it. This, the band's second proper album sees them continuing with their industrialized take on black metal within a similar box as the last. I can't say that the band has really shifted their style so much that it would be obvious anyway, it's more in the songwriting and overall catchiness that I found this to differ from their debut.
There are several different things coming together to make the sound of the group which may not be the most black metal way of sounding. The metal aspect of the band's sound is very rhythmic and dynamic, it's aggressive and focused on the guitar/drums being rhythmically synced up, I've heard comparisons to Fear Factory, and it is fitting. There is also a heavy use of symphonic elements on here as well, which can bring the Dimmu Borgir vibe at times, opener Pray to The Winds for example. There is also the inclusion of other electronics into the sound, whether it be subtle textures or more noticeable techno sort of synthe melodies coming in and out of the sound.
Let me just say that Fear Factory fans will probably be able to get into this record a lot easier than a lot of black metal fans most likely will. There similarities to the band are pretty large, with the music perhaps being a bit more on the aggressive side and having a lot more of an orchestrated sort of sound, but besides that, this band is obviously very derivative of Fear Factory. The clean vocals on tracks like Non Serviam could be mistaken for Burton C. Bell's if you didn't know who you were listening to. Though, to reiterate, the orchestration is much more elaborate sounding and has a lot more in common with Dimmu Borgir rather than Fear Factory.
Despite it being pretty derivative, it's still a solid album and worth listening to. I can't say that at the moment these guys are on the cutting edge of the industrial black metal scene, but they are certainly doing something a bit different from some of the other groups right now. If you like Fear Factory or want a bit of something different in your black metal, definitely check out this album.
Overall Score: 7
Highlights: Anti-Theist, Internecion, Conqueror - Don't Count On It Reviews


Discography

Embrace the Breed (Démo - 2004)
Demo (Démo - 2004)
The Assembly of Tyrants (CD - 2005)
Tyrannical Resurrection (EP - 2007)
Conqueror (CD - 2011)

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Bio

For the last 5 years, one band has defied the norm of metal and continued the progression of musical originality throughout the Midwest. Music that bombards every sense, creates every form of emotion, and reinforces the new age of modern metal. With the mixture of precision inspired rhythms, orchestral melodies, creative and unorthodox lyrical content, and a plethora of intriguing and intense atmospheres, Mechina has created a unique presence in the future of metal.
Their newest release, Conqueror, was let loose on January 1st, 2011, and to the band's credit, the press reviews have been staggeringly positive, high marks all across the board. Add to that a very strong and loyal domestic and worldwide fanbase, and you have a band that's set to be the next big thing in American Heavy Metal.