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Album Reviews : Mental Cavity – Aneurysm

By on December 10, 2017

I’m so conflicted when it comes to Mental Cavity’s new album Aneurysm. Parts of the record I love, wholeheartedly and without reservation. Other parts I think are not only not that great, I think they fall flat for nearly every reason; every decision made was the not-right one. But what’s so weird about it, is that I’m enjoying and disliking different sections for, essentially, the exact same reasons.

So personal-taste disclosure: I’m really into big, groovy doom riffs, and I’m really, rigidly, politically, spiritually, primally opposed to thrash music. You could even say, if you were being cheeky, that I fucking hate even the merest allusion to what is inarguably the worst and most useless genre of not just music, but all collected art through human history including but not limited to Hitler’s insipid landscapes and Industrial Metal.

And so it’s unfortunate then, that Mental Cavity do both, (presumably) to equally high standards. I think. My problem is that everything that works (for me) for slower, groovy riffs, doesn’t at all work for thrash. So what I’m going to do is two short reviews, highlighting the exact same features, which will hopefully let me get my head straight as to how I can enjoy something I dislike. Or dislike something I enjoy. Fuck.

Review 1.

Mental Cavity have ticked every box needed to produce one hell of a sludgy, doomy album. When they want to chuck in a hook, they will fucking hook you – songs like “(Reprise) Earth Ripped Flesh,” “Delirium Collosal” and “Bleak Outlook” will bounce around in your brain for weeks like the riffs were B-Side vocal lines from Carly Rae Jepsen. On the other hand, tracks like “Curb Check” get to a nice, heavy, plodding, thick groove that will make you want to rip a bong and nod profusely (I guess, I’m not a Phil Anselmo fan. Never was, either. Points for me).

But what supports these big, bold and beautiful riffs is the production. The guitars have plenty of fuzz and presence, to really drown out the sound; the drums are roomy and washy, which helps to really fill the space, and the vocals have a great, long, bellow quality, which has them soaring effortlessly over the space. It’s really fucking awesome.

Review 2.

Mental Cavity have ticked every box needed to produce one hellish, sludgy thrash album. When they want to let rip, they just fall flat – songs like “The Dissenter” and “Suffer” have limp riffs and cliched musical breaks, with just… bad, stock thrash drumming. On the other hand, songs like “Exoneration” try to get to a heavy, emotional spot, and just come off as melodramatic and obvious.

But what undermines these tired and yet somehow obnoxious riffs is the production. The guitars have no bite or clarity, which really drowns out their sound; the drums are roomy and washy, which helps to really sound like they recorded a construction site instead of a drum kit, and the vocals have a weird, raspy spacious quality, which has them barking like an empahsimic dog who can’t keep up. It’s really fucking awful.

…see? I don’t know hey. Some of these songs have been put into permanent rotation on my gym playlist, and I genuinely love them. Others make me wish for an Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind/Total Recall-like future, one where suicide is destigmatized so I can fucking kill myself.

Band: Mental Cavity
Album: Aneurysm
Year: 2017
Genre: Metal
Label:  EVP Recordings
Origin: Australia


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.