Martyr - _Warp Zone_
by: Brian Meloon (
The year 2000 has been an incredible year for fans of technical metal. This year has brought not only the long awaited debut of Spiral Architect [CoC #48], but also the Listenable re-issue of Theory in Practice's _The Armageddon Theories_ [CoC #46], the reformation of Watchtower, and now Martyr's second offering, _Warp Zone_. This album improves on their debut _Hopeless Hopes_ in almost every way possible. While their debut was very Death-ish in its approach, _Warp Zone_ could better be described as Spiral Architect meets Meshuggah, with the occasional Death influence. While it's not quite as technical as Spiral Architect, it makes up for this by being much more original. Their music is extremely complex, switching tempos and riffs often throughout each irregularly-structured song. They utilize a variety of riff styles, changing from chunky to intricate to melodic and back again at a rapid pace. While some of the riffs are somewhat derivative, there are a number of excellent original ideas thrown around, and the songs are structured in such a way that it remains fresh and interesting. The playing is excellent on all counts, and even the guitar solos are well done. Even though each member's parts are very technical, the group is very tight. The production is excellent: very heavy and crystal clear. The songwriting is a little disjointed at times, and occasionally I'm left scratching my head wondering "Why'd they do -that-?", but overall it's quite good. This is absolutely essential for fans of technical metal, and fans of original and innovative metal should check it out as well.
(article published 10/25/2000)
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