Words by Brett Bodner
In recent years, it seems like a lot of music sounds the same. It can be difficult to tell bands or artists apart. This becomes frustrating for those seeking new music. However, there has always been one band that has a sound unlike anything you’ll hear. That band is Enter Shikari.
Enter Shikari is known as a band that continuously finds ways to knock down the walls of musical genres. They combine post-hardcore with pop and electronic music. Politically-themed lyrics over the top create a sound that’s unique to the St Albans quartet. With The Mindsweep, they have once again grown as a band and found another way to fine tune their sound. The album has the ability to kick you in the teeth, yet warm your heart at the same time.
Lead singer Rou Reynolds has a unique vocal style. At times, he speaks over the music like he’s reading poetry at an open mic. Other times, he belts out a harsh scream/growl. Both of these styles are present in the opening track “The Appeal & the Mindsweep I,” on which Reynolds sings, “This is an appeal to the struggling and striving stakeholders of this planet/This floating rock we call Earth/Alas, that means you,” before the rest of band jumps in and he screams “I am a mindsweeper!”
“Never Let Go of the Microscope” is similar to Crazy Town’s “Butterfly,” while “There’s a Price on Your Head,” sounds like something straight out of System of a Down’s catalogue. Drummer Rob Rolfe keeps the tempo moving quickly, guitarist Rory Clewlow chugs away with one of the hardest riffs on the album, and Reynolds screams about being in different societal classes, finishing with “I am living in the past.” Once again, the band delivers the perfect balance of rock and electronic music.
Although the band does try some new things on the album, some vintage-sounding Enter Shikari songs also find their way onto the record. “Anaesthetist” hums along with a catchy electronic beat as Reynold’s sings/raps, “Doctor, fetch the Anaesthetist/fetch the Anaesthetist, so when I go under the knife I believe in this.” The song ends in a brutal breakdown of blaring guitars, drums and beats.
One the album’s finest moments is when the band slows things down on “Dear Future Historians…” The song features what may be Reynolds’ best vocal performance. He proves he has a solid voice as he sings over piano — until the song concludes with a powerful ending as the rest of band joins in, singing, “Put your weight on my shoulders.”
With The Mindsweep, Enter Shikari have proved that they are one of the most forward-thinking bands today. They continue to offer listeners and fans music unlike anything else.
© January 20th, 2015
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