Black Matter Device
Hostile Architecture


3.0
good

Review

by MarsKid CONTRIBUTOR (38 Reviews)
February 27th, 2019 | 41 replies


Release Date: 2019 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Something borrowed, something blue, something that's kind of okay.

Listening to Hostile Architecture is an experience unlike a typical musical escapade; Black Matter Device race through a series of influences akin to a Scooby-Doo monster rampaging around oddly-similar hallways, the audience compelled to follow in an effort to unmask the creature. If one had been engaged in the prior episode Modern Frenetics, then it can be argued the evidence was all there from the beginning after all. While noise was certainly a cornerstone of the sonic identity previously established by the band, its presence has been morphed into something not quite as omnipresent, the cacophony supplanted behind waves of spiraling math-tinged grind riffs. These passages prevail above the metalcore direction that the Virginian collective displayed, the differences cemented by the squealing siren tones offered by EP opener “Hurricane Pornography,” technical sweeps intermixed between cascading breakdowns. Production quality is also noticeably divorced from the unrestrained bedlam unleashed earlier—that lovable, disorderly nature is tamed by a cleaner polish. When contained in a concise duration scraping by a ten-minute waterline, the grind motifs dominate any other included element, probably because no other variable is given much room to develop. That’s not to say that Black Matter Device have necessarily lost their edge during this particular transitory period, but it seems as though whatever unique property the group exemplified was forfeited, replaced instead by manufactured heaviness that sounds akin to something borrowed. Abrasive instrumentals are absent from the party and songs generally lack those ‘wow’ factors, such as that random keyboard outburst during “Presto Manifesto” or the relentless, sludge-esque tempo stoppages exhibited in “Gloom Balloons.” Power deficiencies are ultimately abound in the various entries presented.

Attempting to draw comparisons to or otherwise categorize Hostile Architecture alongside preexisting albums is not a requirement, yet there’s no avoiding what feels like inescapable connections. The tipping point ends up arriving early in the form of “The Great Pyramid Scheme of Giza,” whose opening clean vocals and subsequent guitar assault practically exposed the plot of the entire season. Surprise, surprise! Under the hood is none other than old man Daughters. And he would have gotten away with it too, no doubt, had it not been for those meddling Frontierer and Dillinger kids—referring to the bombastic whirlwind “Honest To Goodness,” which revels in over-the-topic technicality, and the complex rhythmic motions of “Hell Is Other People.” Each moment heard within the songs cannot truly proclaim itself memorable as it was already an impactful occurrence played by a dissimilar artist. To many, however, the primary concern boils down to whether or not the brief record can hit hard and produce jam sessions, and in that regard the product is decidedly satisfying. Shifting signatures galore and the riffs bear down a sufficient crushing sensation upon the ears. Beyond that praise, which is indeed deserved to an extent, the end result is a shadow of works past—evaluations clearly craft lines to peers and the apparent departure of an originality aspect compound problems. Anyone bearing knowledge of say, Hell Songs or Miss Machine will be stuck yelling at the television screen, astounded by how the characters can’t seem to detect the crook despite all the clues. A rerun of the episode, perhaps reduced to popcorn-chewing shlock, can still be a good enough romp to ingest. Just don’t be shocked when the cast still can’t manage to find that goon.



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user ratings (8)
Chart.
3.1
good

Comments:Add a Comment 
MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
February 26th 2019


8849 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

inb4 nice soundoff



Just something to keep the creative juices flowin'. Was a 'fun' EP, but comparisons feel impossible to ignore. The debut album is a must-listen though.



Stream on bandcamp: https://blackmatterdevice.bandcamp.com/album/hostile-architecture



Comments, criticism, comments, criticism, and comments are all welcome. Including conversations about eggs.

Digging: Ni - Pantophobie

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
February 26th 2019


8849 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Convert to Scientology, they love abuse stories

Slex
February 26th 2019


6109 Comments


I'm sorta kinda friends with the guitarist, he's an awesome dude
Haven't listened to this yet tho

Digging: Shin Guard - 2020

9Hammer
February 27th 2019


80 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Nice soundoff.



I jest. I liked the theme of this review. Well written, and I'll check out this band when I can.

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
February 27th 2019


8849 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Thanks, glad someone other than a wiped alt read this, appreciate it

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
February 27th 2019


8849 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Well if you mean that, that means a lot to me. Things have been quiet this year so I appreciate the support my man. Hope you're keepin your head up as of late

Papa Universe
February 27th 2019


20033 Comments


Omelette > hardboiled
Black Matter POS

Digging: Pedigree - New Freak

botb
February 27th 2019


12667 Comments


Always weird to see someone I know on this site

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
February 27th 2019


8849 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

@fuku That does mean a lot coming from you. Always shoutbox if you need to my man, I'm around.



Appreciate the other reads as well gents, welcome. Definitely recommend checking these guys' first release if you've got the time.

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
February 27th 2019


8849 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Oh hey, feature! Grateful for the opportunity, thank you kindly.

suppatime
February 27th 2019


1386 Comments


oh damn these guys opened up for ken mode and birds in row. must peep.

Digging: Interpol - El Pintor

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
February 27th 2019


8849 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Can't hurt to check, never know what you'll get from it

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
February 27th 2019


8849 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

[double post]

botb
February 27th 2019


12667 Comments


Guitar player is nicest guy in the world

Slex
February 27th 2019


6109 Comments


He really is

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
February 27th 2019


8849 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Nothing against the boys in any personal sense, naturally, I just call it as I hear it. Rather be fair than sugarcoat, as it were. In the end it's designed to be constructive and provide insight; people can use it as they wish.



Just wanted to clarify.

Slex
February 27th 2019


6109 Comments


Oh yeah of course haha, never thought it was anything like that

botb
February 27th 2019


12667 Comments


Oh dude you absolutely should not bring their character into analyzing the music, it’s completely irrelevant.

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
February 27th 2019


8849 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Agreed, just wanted to make sure people weren't thinking I was going against this guitarist haha

Slex
February 27th 2019


6109 Comments


Oh no, not at all haha
Congrats on the feature btw my dude, well-deserved and I'm glad it gets the band some exposure



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