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Misery Signals Mirrors

Misery Signals - Mirrors
01. Face Yourself
02. The Failsafe
03. Post Collapse
04. Migrate
05. One Day I'll Stay Home
06. Something Was Always Missing, But It Was Never You
07. Reverence Lost
08. Sword Of Eyes
09. An Offering To The Insatible Sons Of God (Butcher)
10. Anchor
11. Mirrors
2006 Ferret Music

Reviewed by: Cory   //   Published: 11/2/2006

A lot of bands whose look or personality doesn't fit neatly into metal or hardcore have been lumped together into the generic genre of "metalcore," but to me, metalcore always had a stricter definition and aesthetic, one that hasn't really seemed to fit a lot of what gets tossed in together these days. Misery Signals plays metalcore in that more specific vein, combining roots in the hardcore community and music with more adventurous song structures and riffing more commonly found in metal. I honestly didn't think bands were still making records like this in 2006. Misery Signals were formed from the ashes of 7 Angels 7 Plagues and brought along with them much of that band's style. After years at it, these guys have taken the whole Shai Hulud-style epic metalcore thing and run with it and after much controversy surrounding the Devin Townsend production of their last album, they've decided to play it relatively safe on Mirrors, an album that should have a little something for pretty much everyone capable of enjoying real metalcore.

Misery Signals do two things on Mirrors that really endear them to me. First, there is hardly a trace of Scandinavian influence. They've also avoided clean singing for the most part. There's no overtly "tech" parts and there's no doom or noise or black metal influence. Misery Signals have wisely avoided the current trends in heavy music and stuck with what they know. There's plenty of chugging parts but most either work on their own or by way of what the rest of the band is playing at the time. The disc's leads are generally played clean and drowned in a sea of reverb, creating a signature sound that flows throughout Mirrors. Ben Schigel (Chimaira, Zao) engineered this record remarkably well and it shows in the depth of the low end and the excellent mix.

The problem with Mirrors is that while it may generally be pretty solid, its flaws are glaringly obvious and difficult to forgive. The few times that a cleaner vocal does rear its ugly head, it sinks the song like "One Day I'll Stay Home," while having a similar near-disastrous effect on "Reverence Lost." There's also a point in "Sword of Eyes" that features the worst cymbal sound I've heard in a long time on what is otherwise a great sounding record. Another major problem that some might have with the disc is that the band does play a style that hit its peak nearly ten years ago and hasn't been particularly appealing since the turn of the century.

Bottom Line: Misery Signals have carved out a neat little niche for themselves, one that some of their members have been working in for quite some time now. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem like there's a lot of room for them to grow doing something that was pretty much done to death. At the end of the day, the parts of this CD that work are a pleasant throwback and the parts that don't are a reminder of why more bands don't do this anymore. Mirrors is definitely worth giving a listen but it's not really anything to get too excited about.

anonymous   posted 3/26/2013 10:46:48 AM
so unfair to say this style had been played to death...misery signals are one of the few original bands of the genre. your review sucks.
urine_for_a_treat_   posted 11/27/2009 7:50:11 PM
wow. drastically underrated and underappreciated album. probably one of the most (if not the only) honest pieces of songwriting to have come out in the last decade until Misanthrpoy Pure came out
Travis Aker_   posted 7/25/2008 12:17:23 AM
That more like an 8/10
Scuba Steve_   posted 10/31/2007 12:37:55 PM
Cory you are retarded.

I have never read so much garbage in my life, it's like trying to decipher the scribblings of a 4 year old. Stop reviewing/writing in general.
headlesshorseman_   posted 7/10/2007 3:12:09 PM
Cory = gay

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