By: Jack Taylor
Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 24/02/.2017
Label: Season of Mist
“Machinations” CD//DD//LP track listing:
1). Fortune Favours The Insane
3). Nine Fates
4). Speak in Tongues
6). Son of Pythagoras
8). Comnixant 30
9). The Purge
Such is the legendary status of Taint is that HARK is still somewhat unfortunately referred to in some quarters as ‘Jimbob’s new band’, much in the same way that Jason Newsted was perpetually ‘the new guy’ in Metallica. Yet I think if HARK carry on putting out material of the calibre of ‘Machinations’ then their status will usurp that of Taint’s in the near future.
The band’s sophomore record is packed to the rafters with the excellent riffage that Jimbob has made a career out of, as well as his characteristic, punky yelp. Compared to their debut effort, 2014’s ‘Crystalline’, HARK sound more confident and better prepared. Gone are the slightly over baked moments of their first album – the chaff has been well and truly sorted from the wheat, and the band sound even better because of it.
Standout track is “Nine Fates”, which begins with a gorgeous old-school Mastodon intro before launching into a pulsating stoner rhythm. “Disintegrate” and “Son of Pythagoras” are also quality tracks, with the familiar but welcome exhibition of High on Fire-esque grooves and exquisite guitar pyrotechnics courtesy of the aforementioned Jimbob. It’s not like HARK are breaking new musical ground, but they are so good at what they do that it doesn’t really matter if they are or they aren’t.
Like ‘Crystalline’, HARK choose to end this opus with a short instrumental followed by a meandering, multi-faceted closing track, that culminates in a crescendo of triumphant guitar melodies. It’s a fitting way to end a solid second effort – I’m certainly looking forward to seeing this lot on the road in the near future, as these nine offerings are sure to sound gargantuan live.
“Machinations” is available here