Meshuggah – Immutable (2xLP, 1000 Copies, Clear/Black Marble)
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Some 35 years and eight full-length albums into their career, what is there left to say about progressive Swedish tech titans Meshuggah that hasn’t been said before? While a lot has happened in the world in the six years since the Swedish innovators last released an album, 2016’s The Violent Sleep of Reason, it’s fair to say that, at this point, we have a pretty good sense of what we’re getting. Almost clinically complex arrangements, syncopated polyrhythms, impossibly technical guitar lines, Jens Kidman’s trademark venomous bark … With the possible exception of 1991’s thrash-tinged, and rather mixed debut, Contradictions Collapse, Meshuggah have been instantly recognizable for three decades. Legendary moments are scattered across a stunningly consistent career, from the monstrous “Exquisite Machinery of Torture” and mindbending discomfort of “Elastic” on Chaosphere to the crunching bile of “Rational Gaze” and “Spasm” (Nothing), and the god-level drumming of Tomas Haake on the likes of “Bleed” (ObZen) and “Clockworks” (The Violent Sleep of Reason). It’s been a long time since Meshuggah had anything left to prove, but what do they still have to offer?