Helmet
Meantime


4.5
superb

Review

by HSThomas USER (33 Reviews)
December 22nd, 2011 | 8 replies | 3,303 views


Release Date: 1992 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Unsung.

3 of 3 thought this review was well written

Helmet could never be described as ‘normal’ in the music world. Many bands have adopted extreme images that reflect their egotism but Helmet were odd because their geeky image of white-collar try-hards just didn’t seem to fit in with their contemporaries in the noise rock and hardcore scenes. The same could be applied to their music, a turgid mix of NYHC grooves with the speed and heaviness of thrash metal and a slight industrial edge that all melded into one huge, fuzzed out wall of rage and noise. It was an odd but brilliant formula that reached its paramour on their sophomore effort Meantime. This album was the effort that Helmet broke away from the heavily hardcore influenced, one-tone songwriting of their contemporaries.

While their debut Strap It On had been inclining towards this direction Meantime went further and blew open the palate for Helmet with a greater emphasis on varying tempos and more varied song structures. Standouts like “FBLA II” and particularly “Unsung” both demonstrate a far wider range of tones, tempos and influences while never losing focus on the repetition, sudden-breaks and monolithic riffing that make up their core sound. Consequently no groove is ever overused and no silence ever overstays its welcome, the songwriting stays almost constantly fresh, fluid and inventive because Helmet discover a near-perfect moderation between the newer influences and the core elements with only one slip up in “You Borrowed.” In finding this balance Helmet’s unmelodic sound surprisingly gains a degree of catchiness. Whether this was an unintended side-product or not is up for debate but the deceptively simplistic songs radiate an un-tuneful catchiness that is normally absent from this type of music and gives Meantime something of a universal appeal, an appeal that they would struggle to recapture late on.

It was this struggle to find that same sweet spot they found on this album that ultimately wrecked the band. In four albums and eight years Helmet were dead and buried without a passing mention in the wind. Today the band is gaining a greater respect and love with each passing year despite Page’s repeated attempts to *** on his own legacy and Meantime still stands as a both a cult classic and a blueprint of how hard rock could and should be done; with precision, catchiness and absolute rage.



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user ratings (428)
Chart.
4.1
excellent
other reviews of this album
(4.5)
Meantime will remain as a hallmark for rock music to come, and for that, it will forever remain a su...

supraman_2 (5)
...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Restrikted
December 22nd 2011



1889 Comments


odd because there geeky,

*they're

accompliceofmydeath
December 22nd 2011



4170 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Nice review. Album is fucking great and one of my gateways into metal.

Blackbelt54
December 22nd 2011



4268 Comments


I still need to get this

Zettel
December 22nd 2011



582 Comments


Very good review. I have actually never listened to this album (or any other from them), despite the critical acclaim. Maybe it is about time...

eternium
December 22nd 2011



16304 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

riffs

KILL
December 22nd 2011



70528 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

nice review

Digging: Gal Costa - Gal Costa

Goatlord
December 22nd 2011



405 Comments


Turned Out is a fucking jam

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
December 23rd 2011



5903 Comments


Very good review, pos.

Been meaning to get into this band for quite some time, but never did.

Will get them sometime.

Digging: The Golden Grass - The Golden Grass



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