Released: 2000, Listenable Records
Reviewer: Nathan Robinson
Mutant is an extra-terrestrial-influenced black metal project put together by Theory In Practice guitarist Peter Lake and drummer Henrik Ohlsson. It was spawned out of anger between Theory In Practice’s first two albums, Third Eye Function and The Armageddon Theories. I am not a black metal fan. Really the only band I listen to that would be considered as such is Dissection. I just think black metal is boring. I like Dissection because they have so much more to offer than your typical black metal bands. When I heard about Mutant, I was immediately interested because I was already hooked on Theory In Practice. However when I read that Mutant was black metal, my interest waned a little. But I went ahead and got the Eden Burnt to Ashes demo anyway. What I heard was good, actually. And so I was eager to hear what The Aeonic Majesty would sound like.
Mutant is hyper-blast driven blackened evil, like typical black metal. But what interests me the most is the guitar playing. Furious, fast as hell, and with great harmonies and melodies…and even a few guitar leads, which surprises me. Some parts stray from black metal, towards more traditional metal, which is good for variety. And the production is much better than the other black metal I’ve heard, so the guitars sound good. And a few songs are actually pretty slow, creating a variety of moods. But I do have one major complaint: the drums…or should I say, the lack thereof. Because Theory In Practice drummer Henrik was a part of this, I just assumed he would do drums. But due to the tight, odd situation the band was in during Mutant’s creation, drum programming was utilized for the album, as on the demo also. Although the demo sounded good, I was hoping Mutant would use real drums for their debut. Alas, it is not so. I hate drum programming. It usually sounds very obvious and just fake. I just get the impression that the band is cheating the listener. I like to listen to all instruments and be impressed by each member’s performance. But how can I be impressed with a drum machine? But at least Mutant’s programming sounds pretty real. Really the only way to notice is to realize how consistent each component of the programming sounds. So basically, when I listen to Mutant, I am listening to the guitars.
Vocally, Henrik sings higher than with Theory In Practice, to give Mutant that extra-evil touch. The song writing is not nearly as complex and insane as Theory In Practice. But things do get pretty crazy at times. Keyboards back up the music frequently, which really is no big deal. I would rather just have more layers of guitars. But there are some really cool atmospheric parts on The Aeonic Majesty, especially in the slower moments on the album.
If you want something that sounds like a hurricane, Mutant may be what you’re looking for. This album would work perfect for the soundtrack to a documentary on tornados. The album cover artwork, which shows an evil, dark, twisted creature, is pretty representative of what lies within and will beckon you to listen. Visit the Mutant web site at: http://hem.passagen.se/mutant1/index2.html.