Minsk CD reveiw [At A Loss]
Sep 27, 2005, 02:03
MINSK Out of a Center Which is Neither Dead or Alive CD
Minsk is an unusual beast: a metal band that even the most snobbish listener would find hard to dismiss. They're fully committed to the heavy, but don't toss them in the metal ghetto just yet. This isn't lunk-head stuff, fit only for the white-trash descendants of marrying cousins; it's satisfying both intellectually and viscerally. Comparisons could probably be made to previous doom metal standard-bearers, but if I had to name-check another band to describe their sound, I wouldn't go to another metal band, I'd call it Godspeed! You Black Emperor doing the doom.
The first track “Waging War on the Forevers” sets the tone. It starts off with a wash of ambient noise to get you comfortable, but just when you're settled, a wave of heavy comes rolling in—monstrous, lava-flow riffs crashing on the shore. Slowly the wave pulls back, and morphs into a soft, melodic passage that could even be described as pretty (this is where the Godspeed! comparison comes into play). But they're just setting you up for another sucker punch. Because there it is, another wave, pounding on your head, all the more potent for what went before. The rest of the album works the same dynamic, a push-pull between melody and space and grind and crush.
Tim Mead's vocals deserve a special mention. He's a howler for sure, but unlike most metal vocalists who are fully occupied with trying to sound like they're coughing up their larynx, he's smart enough to know that having passion in his voice is the main thing. To sum up, highly recommended for doom metal aficionados in the mood for something fresh and innovative and a great starting point for anyone interested in seeing what doom can be all about. [At A Loss]