M.T.Void is a side project containing Justin Chancellor from Tool and Peter Mohamed from Polish metal band Sweet Noise. I’ll be blunt from the off in saying, for those people expecting this project to sound like Tool will ultimately be left disappointed. While this album is the bass heavy sound you’ve come to expect from Justin over the years, and does come packed with meaty bass riffs with a great groove, the album overall isn’t quite what you expect.
Nothing’s Matter starts off with opening track “Dear Eric”, which is basically a computer sending a message to Eric about how great he is – off to an odd start? You haven’t heard anything yet – this track drags on for just over 2 minutes then moves on to the radio-friendly track (in comparison to the rest of the album) Black Days, a nice guitar riff is playing quietly in the background while Bass and drums lock in until it gets halfway through the song and kicks in with a melodic guitar riff, then quickly shifts into a solo. Not a bad way to get the album going.
The rest of the album from here on out is best described as one long experiment. Were they attempting Avant-garde? You could look at it that way. Regardless of what they were going for, the ideas put into this album payoff and other times not so much. To make matters more difficult, it’s one of them albums where you can’t say which songs are good and bad, because each song has strong qualities, but equally weaker ones to match.
The title track, Nothing’s Matter, sets off to a promising start but quickly becomes stagnant and boring, suffering from little change from rhythm or melody, but on the flipside you get a track like Toad, which kicks you straight in the face with this monstrous, distorted bass and awesome groove. ‘Dub Set’ has a cool bassline and flows well, but then halfway through there is a really random section with a women screaming, which just feels really out of place with the tone of the song.
Musically, the album is a fun listen. There are some cool electronic parts in the songs, Justin does a great job with his bass parts, and the drum and guitar work has its moments to shine. While there are some moments in songs where it could have been spiced up a bit or had a new section added to break the monotony, the weaker link mainly comes from the vocal work --which is certainly an acquired taste to begin with. Pete doesn’t bring a great deal to a lot of the tracks and what’s more frustrating is when it does get to them parts that feel dragged out or due a change, you really feel these parts were meant for the vocals to take charge. There is a very industrial simplicity to his vocals, and for this type of music it suffers a little because of it.
Overall, it’s not a bad album, it’s a mixed bag. It has that self-indulgent feeling where you know these guys never intended to make anything other than what they wanted. They certainly are a unique sounding band, but it’s not for everyone.
Proceed with caution.