REVIEW: Misterer – Under Attack

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Have you ever wondered what happens if you mix groove and thrash metal? If so, you need to check MISTERER. This Finnish band was founded by multi-instrumentalist, singer, and producer Mikko Herranen, and their second full length studio album, “Under Attack,” will be released on December 18th, 2020, under the label Three Chords Music.

The first experience with this album seems very linear in its approach. The opening song, “The End,” sets the tone for the whole piece. Though it feels as if there is not a lot of variety, there are still some interesting turns and dynamics that change the soundscape of this album. There is a sense of repetitiveness and there are no surprises around the corners. On a positive note, this means that you can just sit and listen to the songs with the feeling that you know exactly what is coming next and still get excited about the dynamics and catchy melodies. 

Notably, the sound on this album has a lot of bass in it. This still gives some depth and flavor to the whole album, but it pushes the guitar tones a little bit to the back and gives it a little muddy sound overall. The guitars are the bright spot that this record has to offer: they are chunky, heavy, groovy, and dynamic, offering fluidity as they dictate where the songs go. Likewise, the vocals are perfect. I really enjoyed what Herranen‘s vocals had to offer to this album – very steady, cohesive, and balanced from top to bottom. Adding some guest musicians here and there changed the dynamics ever so slightly. These tracks that have guest musicians added their own flavor.

Opening track “The End” is very fast driven, groovy, and heavy. The guitars really drive the sound, not only of this song, but predominantly of the whole record. The vocals are the perfect partner for that driving power. They really match well with the intensity that the guitars have and it gives the overall track a lot of power a lot of strength. The backing vocals that add a little bit of grit to this song. when it comes across the verse are more driven, the chorus is a little bit heavier and groovier there’s a very slight dynamic change from the verses into the chorus. This allows the song to flow very good from the beginning all the way to the end, very fluid, dynamic almost not stopping at the chorus even though there’s a slight change on how the verses in the chorus are coming together. 

“Mass Grave” likewise offers a lot of grooviness and still has a lot of heavy elements. It’s still fast driven but the overall funky sound really permeates and allows this track to be a little bit more impactful the chorus breaks the song. The backing vocals in that chorus allow the song to have a little bit more volume to have more presence. The track has a very dynamic non-linear sound.

Joker” is the stand-out track from the album. The sound of this song feels more industrial and the vocals that were used on this track are very dynamic; there’s a lot to digest. It feels like it’s coming at you in waves and is not necessarily linear. Different vocal styles and singing approaches makes it very dynamic. They manage to merge thrash, groove rhythms, and industrial worlds together.

The idea of combining the groove with thrash and industrial elements merged into the whole album is very tasty and pleasant to the ear. Having guest musicians on this album brings something extra to the tracks that at first glance look very similar and repetitive and the guitar riffs definitely gave a dynamic and powerful flavor to the overall album.

Written by Peter Jerman

Tracklist

  1. The End
  2. Mass Grave
  3. We Kill
  4. Joker
  5. Life = Death
  6. A Sense of Purpose
  7. Totalitarian
  8. Human Pollution
  9. We All Are the Same
  10. Premonition
  11.  Servants

Lineup

Mikko Herranen – lead vocals, drums

Juhani Flinck – guitars, backing vocals

Timo Hänninen – guitars, backing vocals

Beavis – bass, backing vocals

Label

Three Chords Music

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