Friday 15 February 2013

Voivod - Target Earth (Album Review)



Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 22 January 2012
Label: Century Media

Track listing:
1) Target Earth 6:04
2) Kluskap O'Kom 4:24
3) Empathy for the Enemy 5:46
4) Mechanical Mind 7:35
5) Warchaic 7:01
6) Resistance 6:45
7) Kaleidos 6:27
8) Corps Étranger 4:35
9) Artefact 6:26
10) Defiance 1:32

The Band:
Snake - Vocals
Blacky - Bass Guitar
Away - Drums
Chewy - Guitars

Holy shit y'all! I believe we have the album of the year here already. Voivod has never failed me ever since I got into them back in 1987 when Killing Technology came out. Still I didn't expect this! Target Earth is a one of a kind beast where Voivod has surpassed themselves with a mile and a half. Every time I listen to it the band delivers something new. There are so many nuances on here that it's going to take me a good while to discover them all. And I can live with that quite easily.

"New" guitarist Daniel "Chewy" Mongrain is a pure revelation and he is by far the best replacement for Piggy the band could have ever found. He has been with Voivod since 2008 but only in a touring capacity, therefore Target Earth is his studio debut with them. What can I say without sounding like a blubbering fool? He pulls off something truly amazing by mixing Piggy's legacy with his own style thus creating the sound Voivod needs, to move forward without stagnating. Fantastic folks, simply fantastic.

Target Earth sees the Quebec quartet so awesomely rejuvenated. I don't know if it's because of the inclusion of Chewy. Regardless, the songwriting, the musicianship and the band's obvious joy in making this album are impeccable and the songs flow so easily and free without any constraints. Also, the inclusion of their first ever song, sung in French, Corps Étranger, is probably a result of this as well. But that's only my opinion.

Snake has a really nice bite and ferocity to his voice as always and although he is a bit more raspier than before in certain places, he has never sounded this good. You'll hear that throughout Target Earth, still checkout Kluskap O'Kom, Empathy For The Enemy and Resistance and you know what I mean?  The rhythm section of Blacky and Away on bass and drums respectively have always been something else and having played together for so long has only slipstreamed them into the perfect tight unit they are. Just listen to the insanity that is Kaleidos where they shine like a supernova exploding. Awesome!

Voivod are a band that has always stayed true to their original sound but they have managed to evolve in a way that keeps their music interesting and great. They still have their earl-days mix of thrash-punk-Motorhead, but blended with a nice progressive streak. It's still disharmonic and chaotic yet greatly structured the way only Voivod can. After all, they created a whole new genre where a lot of bands have tried to at least emulate them at various levels of success. But no one can surpass them and with the release of Target Earth they made that even more impossible. This is a must in any music collection so go get a copy right now!

Written by: Håkan Nyman
As ever show your support to the band. This is truly an Album of the Year contender. 
Thanks to Sarah @ Century Media for the hook up. Check the links for more info on the band. Record is available to buy via CMDistro or at all good stockists.  Album is available for DD at the usual places.