The Algorithm
Octopus4


4.0
excellent

Review

by Daniel Davis CONTRIBUTOR (46 Reviews)
June 5th, 2014 | 7 replies


Release Date: 06/02/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: What is "normal" for The Algorithm still counts as blissful insanity by any other measure.

The Algorithm is a weird case, to say the least. Rémi Gallego's eclectic mix of hardcore, metal, dubstep, and other electronic genres is as polarizing as it is pulverizing, and is marketed more to fans of the modern progressive metal scene than it is to the electronic music crowd. Yet with each subsequent album, Rémi pushes more and more towards a traditional EDM sound, restricting the hardcore influences and removing a good amount of the schizophrenia the project is known for. Octopus4 is the cumulation of this - while it's very representative of their past sound, Rémi focuses his skills more on crafting layered and nuanced tracks that unfold instead of abruptly exploding.

Octopus4 is somewhat of a concept album: it's about a Commodore 64 becoming corrupted, sentient, and bent on world domination. The way the music reflects this is in a gradual ramp of the insanity - opener "Autorun" is a normal trance-y song with little to no trace of shenanigans, followed up by "Discovery", which only sounds nuts because it's essentially a track cut from the Sonic the Hedgehog 3 soundtrack. But by "Will_Smith" (which I presume is the name of the virus that infects the computer in question), the crazy is back with a vengeance. Things calm down a bit by the time "Void" rolls around, but by then the mental damage has already been inflicted; "Sythesiz3r" is Rémi's signature sound at full force, and "Damage Points" does syncopated rhythms better than most actual progressive metal bands do at this point. Still, by the time that the closing title track rolls around, you're thankfully likely to be more interested than you are exhausted.

It seems a little hard for Octopus4 to truly stand out at first glance, given the pedigree of its creator. It doesn't have the "what is even happening" intensity of "Critical_Error", or the progressive song structures of "Polymorphic Code". But it turns out that what is "normal" for The Algorithm still counts as bat*** insanity compared to most other music. Maybe Rémi has found the perfect sweet spot by tempering his maniacal outbursts with comparatively calm electronics, or maybe he's just transitioning to a more manageable sound. What is certain is that the album is every bit as essential as the ones that preceded it, and might even attract a few more fans in the process.



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user ratings (37)
Chart.
3.8
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
paradox1216
Contributing Reviewer
June 5th 2014


728 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Really enjoyed this one, I've always been a fan though



The recommended albums might seem weird given that I mainly described this as being closer to EDM, but it's still the only real comparisons I could make



Album is streaming in a YT playlist here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3ZzI8W8_ug

Calc
June 5th 2014


12951 Comments


yay i reviewed one of the recommendations!! I wasn't digging this band's last album so let's see how this is.

EDIT: yeah this sounds like a less crazy Igorrr

ForestGagnon
June 6th 2014


14 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is incredible. More texture than a strip of velcro, and with very cerebral songwriting. Can't wait to blast this on a decent sub.

LunaticSoul
June 8th 2014


797 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Not enjoying this one as much as I thought I would.

paradox1216
Contributing Reviewer
June 8th 2014


728 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

is Igorrr any good? I've heard him mentioned a lot recently in various places

AlexTM510
November 8th 2014


1422 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

late on this, but wow this so far this sounds great-personally i find this more interesting than their debut atm

Digging: Dumbsaint - Panorama, In Ten Pieces

Cherubian
July 23rd 2015


12 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I didn't like this when it first came out but now I like it even more than PC (which I like a lot).



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