MINDISTRY - KATASTROFTANKAR
Reviewer Score: 7 out of 10
TO VALHALLA BY TANK!
The focus of our attention today is a young Swedish project with a vaguely familiar name Mindistry. Yes, the Swedes are separated from the iconic Industrial-scene band called Ministry by one letter and... a bunch of other things. It seems to me that such name would be justified if Mindistry were a cover band, but no – the material of their debut album lies in a slightly different plane than the work of their American colleagues. But whatever motivates the choice of the band's name, let's leave it on the conscience of the authors and get down to business.
Already the first chords of the intro make it clear why Mindistry mentioned Sabaton and Raubtier as their influences. But if Sabaton's influence can be attributed more to heroic and battle lyrics (and what else can Vikings sing about, if not how they fight their way to Valhalla through the dead bodies of their enemies?), then one can find much more parallels with Raubtier. Firstly, all the material of the debut album “Katastroftankar” is performed in Swedish which is the native language of the band, what, of course, gives the album a certain national flavor, although the Swedish school of metal (in general, not only the Industrial Metal one) is quite unique and recognizable in itself, often regardless of the language. Secondly, the rhythmic pattern themselves are very similar to Raubtier, only in this respect the Mindistry has a significant advantage. Over the years of Raubtier's creative activity, they have played their material inside and out and, as a result, they became boring, predictable and monotonous. In their turn, Mindistry compiled some of the most suitable ideas for themselves, making a kind of collective image of the European school of Industrial Metal. Maybe, it sounds not too fresh, but you can't blame the band for one of the deadly sins – dismay. In addition to that, “Katastroftankar” is a very decent sounding album for the debut record of a project that does not have a contract with a major label. Of course, there are flaws in the technical part, especially when it comes to the way vocals are mixed but, in general, the overall picture is very nice. Tight and angry guitars, bass is not out of place and not lost in the mix, keyboards are always in place, and extreme vocals are very good, which, however, I cannot say about the attempts of the vocalist to use clean vocals, but, fortunately, these attempts are not so frequent, and his voice is not so bad, just not too charismatic.
I think it's also worth mentioning that the song material of the band is not particularly a hit one (the songs do not stick to your memory after listening to the album), but this is compensated by the overall drive and guitar solos (yes, such guitar solos are not the most common thing in Industrial Metal). In general, it seems that the main instrument of the Mindistry`s songwriter (Gustaf Hammarin) is the guitar because there are no complaints about it at all: it sounds cool, and all the song material is definitely built around it.
Well, we talked about the sound of the album in general. Now let's take a closer look at the songs themselves. And among them I would single out the following ones: “Våldsamt Motstånd” and “Blodtörst” for the brightest keyboard parts, “Stridskallet” and “Dolda Tankar” for cool riffing. Moreover, I can generally mention “Stridskallet” as one of my main favorites on the album. I would also consider “Ökenstorm” to be the same kind of favorites if clean vocals were brighter and more expressive. But the track definitely has potential and if I were Mindistry, I would probably release it as a single. But the first single was the track called “U.M.L.B”. It is faster, more intense, has the elements of Speed/Thrash Metal and one of those guitar solos that I talked above. Basically, this is also a good choice. At least, “U.M.L.B” probably reflects the overall sound of the record better. But, in my opinion, the ending of the album is not as good as it should be. Neither “Kylans Kreatur” nor “Bortglömd” made a positive impression on me. The latter turned out to be a kind of ballad, the only one on the album, by the way. But still, with the vocal talents of the Mindistry frontman, the only possible kind of ballad on the album is something in the style of Funeral Doom Metal with growling vocals only.
Let`s make a conclusion. The Swedes released a very strong work, albeit with their shortcomings, but this is a strong statement for a debut on the European Industrial Metal scene. And even if it is difficult to call the song material to be original, but, for whom does it have to be such at the end of the day? Besides, how many new Swedish Industrial-Metal bands do you know? Deathstars have sunk into oblivion, Raubtier seem to be coming up with new names for the same album, Hulkoff are the same as Raubtier, only about Vikings, not about tanks, and, well, there is Zavod left. And now we have another promising name in the genre, which, I hope, will be interesting to watch. And I'll score the album with 7 out of 10.
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- ReleasedApril 22, 2022
- GenresIndustrial Metal