Released: 2006, Nuclear Blast
I’ll open this review right off the bat with an admission: I am not, and have never been, a Meshuggah fan. Why? Simply because I’ve never come across their music. With that in mind, I was actually quite curious and excited to listen to this disc. A re-release of the band’s 2002 album, apparently with re-recorded guitars, NOTHING also comes with a bonus DVD.
While I cannot compare the sound of this version to the original, I can say that the production is excellent, having the clarity required to properly highlight the band’s complex music. As for the guitars, yes they are heavy, as the band used the 8-string guitars they used for Catch-33. Again, I can’t compare so take that for what it’s worth.
As for the music, I have to say I am unimpressed. I know Meshuggah has its share of detractors, but I also know people who swear by this band. After hearing NOTHING, it seems that I come down on the detractor side of things. I definitely appreciate the talent it takes to play music this challenging, but for me, it is just not any fun to listen to. I think the main reason is Jens Kidman’s one-dimensional vocals. The guy just bores me. It really doesn’t matter what Thordendal and Hagstrom wring from their guitars, as long as Kidman keeps using that monotone shout of his, I’m out.
As for the accompanying DVD…I gotta blame the label or shipping on this one. It was scratched and wouldn’t play in either of my DVD players. So, no comment from me on that, except to say at least the band put something extra into this re-release for the fans.
While I appreciate the fact that the band was not happy with the original production of NOTHING and decided to fix it (hey, it worked for Nevermore!), this is one package that is truly for fans only.