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Album Reviews : The Matador – Destroyer

By on September 19, 2014

The Matador - Destroyer cover artI’m not sure if I just don’t know enough about this genre (whatever genre this happens to be), or if there really aren’t that many bands that do heavy music quite like this, but in my limited experience, The Matador are filling a hole I wasn’t aware I had until I listened to The Matador.

I understand it’s kind of doomy, kind of hardcorey, kind of lots of things; as it stands I haven’t heard many albums in the last few years that stay so thoughtful while belting out the heavy riffs. A lot of bands tend to drop in the obligatory “fast bit” part way through one of the first songs, presumably to let everyone know they still know how to ROCK YOU GUYS! The Matador don’t need to. They also don’t need to get superslow, with one clean guitar picking random notes over a guy mumbling for nine and a half minutes. Listen to the first riff of Rodinia. It’s as meaty as married swingers.

There’s not a part of this CD that seems to be in service of anything other than the rest of the album. I’ve always been a sucker for melancholic melodies, and happily enough for me, they form the core of Destroyer (as opposed to being the rare glimpse of maturity spied behind the two-stepping and break downing).

My only complaint would be that there are a few more “quieter” moments than I’d personally like. Like I said, they aren’t as useless as a lot of bands make them; they’re still well crafted passages of music, it’s just not the best type of music on the CD. And to be fair, these more peaceful moments make the overall album as good as it. Without them it would probably lose some steam towards the end, and it’s their expert use of light and shade without being so blatantly fucking obvious about it which kept me interested. I’m just being demanding. When you’re writing riffs as heavy and expressive as this, I’m going to want more of them. Maybe that was deliberate…

I want to see The Matador live. I can only imagine how perfect it would be to have this tearing through front of house, with no sections for douchebags to “openupdafuckinpit!”, but also no extended lower-back-ruining passages that usually have me weighing up the cost of the door price with my desire to sit down.

I really like how good Australian metal is getting, without having to be anything other than good. Ripping vocals, impressive riffs, beefy drumming, and no wank – The Matador nailed it. If Destroyer doesn’t make The Matador even more well known than they are, then we live in a Godless universe, devoid of fairness and hope. Which suits the tone of this album anyway, I guess.

Band: The Matador
Album: Destroyer
Year: 2014
Genre: Post-metal / Progressive Sludge
Label: Independent
Origin: Gold Coast, Queensland

Track list:
1. Pannotia
2. Rodinia
3. Destroyer
4. Ur
5. Vaalbara
6. Nuna
7. Pangaea

About

Mitch is a 26 year old vegan, socialist, atheist, utilitarian, reductionist metalhead, stand up comedian and philosophy major that hates labels. When he isn't being politely ignored at dinner parties he's being politely ignored on comedy nights around the country.