Meshiaak – Mask of All Misery (2019)

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For their sophomore album, Mask of all Misery, Melbourne’s own MESHIAAK really take things up a notch from their debut album, Alliance of Thieves.

The opener, Miasma, is a four minute instrumental that does wonders to build tension and create anticipation for the remainder of the album.   The title track follows, and it is full of relentless riffs, viscous vocals and pounding rhythms.  This is metal, but it’s layered and features textures that will appeal to a wide variety of metal fans.

Bury the Bodies is purposeful and grinding, with restrained vocals throughout. If this track doesn’t grab you right away, give it a second listen – it’s a grower.  City of Ghosts, on the other hand, is an instant punch in the face, full of chunky riffs which will shake your very foundations.  A blistering lead break, and some fantastic vocals from Danny Camilleri make this a highlight.

Face of Stone bursts forth with a blood curdling scream, before becoming a very guitar driven track.  The rhythm section is the engine room, but the guitars really are the killer element here.  There’s an underlying groove running throughout that will have your head nodding in appreciation.

Tears that Burn the Son is a slower, but no less powerful track, that is a little more commercial sounding than anything else on offer.  There’s a Godsmack feel to the track, and an epic guitar solo towards the tracks climax.

Ushering in a softer moment of the record is Doves.  Acoustic strumming and some huge pounding drums are backed up by a big bass line and another excellent vocal showing.  In the Final Hour fires us back up, and between the weighty guitars, massive drumming and yet another ripping vocal, it’s another highlight.

Adrena is one of the heavier tracks of the album.  MESHIAAK really cuts loose here, and you’ll be doing the same as you listen.  Finishing the album off is the epic, Godless.  It’s epic in length, but also epic in sheer heaviness.  This is a brilliant slab of heavy metal goodness, and a cracking way to close out the album.

No “sophomore slump” here.  MESHIAAK nailed it.

9/10

Shayne McGowan.

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