Friday, April 15, 2011

The Haunted: Unseen

The Haunted
Reviewed by Rob Acocella

The Haunted are back with their highly anticipated new album Unseen. I'm going to come right out and say up front that I've never been much of a fan. I didn't hate the band, I just never got into them. I'm very happy to say that I went into this with no expectations at all, and came out really liking the album.

I'm not in love with the band yet, but I do like what I'm hearing on Unseen. I'm not sure what changed or what was done differently, but I'm actually catching onto some of the hooks and grooves on this album. There are some really great heavy moments that make me want to swing my fists around, and then there are  songs like the title track that are just so damn toe-tapping groovy that you can't get them out of your head.

Some of my favorite tracks would have to be "Unseen," "Catch 22," and "Them."

As a side note, I think that in the past The Haunted were almost too heavy for their own good, and not in a good way. I think their songwriting and production was always pushed a tad too hard, creating something that worked for a niche group of fans. Unseen has a more broad feel to it, closer to really Hard Rock rather than the brand of Metal that they are known for. Personally, I like that about this album, but I can see how some long-time fans might be a bit disappointed. But hey, everyone takes a turn that pisses off some fans from time to time. Anybody remember St. Anger?

Rating 3/5

TesseracT: One

Reviewed by Rob Acocella

One is the debut album by TesseracT, released on Century Media records. This album has a great vibe to it, and it combines melody and rage almost seamlessly into one tight little package. The songs have the feel of real music craftsmanship and each one takes you deeper into the groove of the album than the last. Listening closely to the instrumentation you can tell that this wasn't one of those albums that was rushed and put out just for the sake of putting something out. What you have here are carefully plotted rhythms with patterns that seem both simple and intricate all at once. The entire album has its own ambiance and it holds to it even when switching gears from melodic to heavy. That's a refreshing quality in a music scene where artists tend to blow their own albums apart at times by choosing the wrong combo of songs, or the wrong track list sequence, resulting in an interrupted listening experience.

In all honesty, I've been quite bored with the Prog scene for a very long time, but this kind of Prog Metal is exactly what has been lacking for years. TesseracT is a breath of fresh air in a musical atmosphere that was getting very stale recently.

TesseracT is currently on tour promoting One, and I'm going to be honest, if you miss out on their performances, it's your own loss. I have a feeling these guys are going to be making a much bigger name for themselves in the near future, so keep your eyes out for when they come to your town and be sure to get out and see them, and pick up the album.

Rating: 5/5