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After a four year vacation, MESHUGGAH returns with their long-awaited follow-up, Nothing. Apparently the band wanted to try playing everything on bass. But instead they decided to record the album with eight string guitars (becoming the first metal band to do so), resulting in the their heaviest record to date. Although the album isn’t as frantic as its predecessor, Chaosphere, Nothing is just as complex as any of the band’s previous work. Overall, the tempos on the album are much slower, groovier, and at times, more atmospheric. Nonetheless, Tomas Haake continues to write the book on syncopated metal poly-rhythms (and even throws in some tribal drumming into the mix) which play against Marten Hagstrom and Fredrik Thordendal’s crushing riff patterns, creating an uneasy tension throughout. Thordendal continues to explore jazz-fusion soling in metal, at times sounding like Allan Holdsworth or a metal Frank Zappa. Jens Kidman’s vocals are as pissed and volatile as ever, as he shouts full-blast throughout, only stopping briefly for his cryptic delivery found on “Spasm.” Nothing’s lyrics deal with the human psyche but are very abstract and open to interpretation. Unless you have a computer, you won’t be able to access them anyway as they are only found on this disc. With Nothing, MESHUGGAH have once again delivered a complex, original piece of work which once again separates them from the dull, predictable norms of the mainstream metal scene. (Nuclear Blast)