(Andy Synn would like to introduce you to the debut album from Hippotraktor, out tomorrow on Pelagic Records, and invites you to leave your prejudices and preconceptions at the door)
I know that the post-Meshuggah breed of Metal bands can provoke some pretty divisive reactions around these parts. And I understand why.
After all, what initially seemed to be fresh and fertile soil for creativity and experimentation quickly became over-saturated with copycats and soundalikes whose music only seemed to grow increasingly sanitised, simplified, and mass-produced for mass-appeal with each successive generation.
But, let’s be honest, that’s the case for most, if not all, styles of music, to one extent or another, and just because the veritable deluge of Djent, Post-Djent, Proto-Djent, and Pseudo-Djent bands reached its saturation point in practically record time doesn’t mean you should dismiss any and all groups who elect to take inspiration from the works of Thordendal, Haake, et al.
I mean, it’s entirely up to you if you want to do that, sure, but you’re potentially robbing yourself of the chance to discover and enjoy a whole plethora of bands whose love of polyrhythmic groove and atmospheric melody transcends the trite tricks and tropes of their more djeneric peers.
Which brings us nicely to Meridian, the debut album from Belgium’s Hippotraktor.