Review Summary: A fantastic release by The Dillinger Escape Plan that may be the bands best release to date.
A bit of a foreword before I really start this review: I've only listened to The Dillinger Escape Plan once before and my initial opinion was that they were terrible. I never doubted any of the band members playing abilities, they are definitely all extremely skilled in their respective instruments, but I found their music to be very boring and pretentious. That was about two years ago, and since One of Us Is the Killer
was released recently, I figured it was a good chance to try and give the band another chance. Well I can now say that I understand the hype behind the band, and why people laud them so much. The Dillinger Escape Plan is, from what I understand, a very prolific and famous math-core band with very strong progressive tendencies and tinges of influence from every genre known to man. The band released Calculating Infinity
in 1999 where everyone preceded to go crazy over the band praising them as musical geniuses. One of Us Is the Killer
is the band’s fifth release and many people are saying that it is quite possibly their best release to date since their debut album. What follows below are my first impressions of the album:
These guys really know how to write some amazing, extremely complex, and intricate songs. The album kicks it off with the song, “Prancer”. “HOW COULD IT ALL BE"” Greg Puciato, the lead singer of the band, screeches with the intensity and force one would expect from listening to Dillinger. There’s this heavy, frantic, groove-like riff playing during the verse that changes rhythm in an almost stuttering like fashion. For a moment I was convinced that the song skipped while I was listening to it, only to discover that it was just Dillinger being Dillinger. Each song on this record has the overarching math-core feel to it, but each and every song on here is completely different from the other. There isn’t a single song on here that sounds too familiar or suffers from any sort of lack of creativity. The band lives up to its experimental and progressive name by adding in influences from far out genres and by implementing the strangest time signatures and rhythm changes into each song.
This album has incredible depth to it that demands multiple listens if you want to really grasp all the musical nuances the band has placed throughout the entirety of the album. There are little changes in tempo that I described previously for example, random electronic sound effects or samples, little interludes that trick you into thinking the extreme brutality is over, and so on. It isn’t uncommon for the songs to just suddenly shift moods completely out of the blue. One second the band is laying down some dissonant chords or leads in a sort of chaotic frenzy, and then next thing you know, the song turns into a relaxing clean interlude only to switch back, right when you think it’s safe. This kind of spontaneity and creativity makes for a continuously interesting listen that I highly doubt will bore anyone who is looking for something fresh on the hardcore side of music.
Though I have listened to the album in its entirety, I feel like I missed more than half of what is really there; hiding in wait under the chaotic frenzy of sound that normally is at the forefront of the songs. If you really want to absorb all that is lying in wait for you in this record you can’t just toss this album aside after one listen. Multiple listens are required and a lot of time is needed to notice every little detail Dillinger has placed in this amazing LP. This record is an excellently crafted album from a band that knows what they are doing when it comes to song writing and are not afraid of experimenting with their sound, or completely throwing any sort of conventional song structure out the window.