MESHUGGAH — Contradictions Collapse (review)

MESHUGGAH — Contradictions Collapse album cover Album · 1991 · Technical Thrash Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
3.5/5 ·
UMUR
"Contradictions Collapse" is the debut full-length studio album by technical thrash metal act Meshuggah. The album was relased through Nuclear Blast Records in January 1991. The original vinyl version of the album features 8 tracks while the CD version features a 9th bonus track in "Cadaverous Mastication". Meshuggah formed in 1987 (shortly functioning under the Calipash monicker) and released the "Ejaculation of Salvation" demo in 1989 and later the same year the "Meshuggah (Psykisk Testbild)" EP. There has been one lineup change since the release of the EP as drummer Niklas Lundgren has been replaced by Tomas Haake.

Stylistically the material on "Contradictions Collapse" is technical thrash metal. Lead vocalist/rhythm guitarist Jens Kidman has a voice and vocal style which is somewhat similar to how James Hetfield of Metallica sounded in the 80s, although generally a bit more monotone and raw and shouting. Comparisons to the most technical moments on Metallica´s "...and Justice for All (1988)" are also valid enough, but Meshuggah are ultimately an even more technically complex and brutal monster. There´s often a fusion edge to the drumming, and lead guitarist Fredrik Thordendal has a jazz/fusion solo style which is strongly influenced by Allan Holdsworth. "Contradictions Collapse" is not an easily accessible release and the material takes a bit of time and a few spins to remember. Given enough spins hooks begin to appear in memorable riffs and drum patterns or a catchy vocal phrase here and there. The point is that the album is more memorable than it may initially appear.

"Contradictions Collapse" features a powerful and detailed sounding production. It´s not the most well balanced sound production out there, and while it´s nice to actually be able to hear the bass on the metal production, the metallic toned bass is a little too dominant in the mix. The guitars should have been slightly higher placed in the mix and the bass a little lower and the album would arguably have prospered from it. Considering it´s a 1991 thrash metal release, "Contradictions Collapse" is still a well produced album though, so the balance of the instruments in the mix is after all a minor issue. Upon conclusion "Contradictions Collapse" is a strong debut album by Meshuggah and while it´s not a perfect release, and fans of the band´s subsequent releases aren´t guaranteed to enjoy this (it sounds very different from the ultra heavy, complex, and groove laden extreme metal of later works), it´s a succesful release on its own terms. Fans of technical late 80s/early 90s thrash metal are recommended to give this one a listen. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is fully deserved.
Share this review

Review Comments

Post a public comment below | Send private message to the reviewer
Please login to post a shout
siLLy puPPy wrote:
44 days ago
I guess i don't like this one so much is because i got into the newer albums first and it seemed like a snapshot of the transition from Metallica clones to something truly original. I still gave it 3 stars for those special moments. Can't be a Meshuggah fan without it for sure :)
UMUR wrote:
44 days ago
I didn´t use to enjoy this much, but I decided to give it another try and it finally clicked with me. And hell yeah it´s Metallica influenced, but I still think it sounds quite different. Especially the fusion influenced playing and the Holdsworthian soloing. Metallica never did anything like that.
siLLy puPPy wrote:
45 days ago
This one is waaaaay too Metallica influenced for my liking but they certainly got their act together and i love every album they did after

MMA TOP 5 Metal ALBUMS

Rating by members, ranked by custom algorithm
Albums with 30 ratings and more
Master of Puppets Thrash Metal
METALLICA
Buy this album from our partners
Moving Pictures Hard Rock
RUSH
Buy this album from our partners
Rust in Peace Thrash Metal
MEGADETH
Buy this album from our partners
Powerslave NWoBHM
IRON MAIDEN
Buy this album from our partners
Are You Experienced? Proto-Metal
JIMI HENDRIX
Buy this album from our partners

New Metal Artists

New Metal Releases

Uinuos syömein sota Pagan Black Metal
HAVUKRUUNU
Buy this album from MMA partners
No Sludge Metal
BORIS
Buy this album from MMA partners
Truth and Ruin Stoner Rock
DEAD QUIET
Buy this album from MMA partners
A Quiet Place to Die Nu Metal
ALPHA WOLF
Buy this album from MMA partners
Bitterness And Burning Hatred Death Metal
SKELETAL
Buy this album from MMA partners
More new releases

New Metal Online Videos

Limp Bizkit - Counterfeit
LIMP BIZKIT
Unitron· 4 days ago
DEAD QUIET - Foul Words
DEAD QUIET
voila_la_scorie· 5 days ago
DEAD QUIET - Dear Demon
DEAD QUIET
voila_la_scorie· 5 days ago
More videos

New MMA Metal Forum Topics

More in the forums

New Site interactions

More...

Latest Metal News

members-submitted

More in the forums

Social Media

Follow us

Buy Metal Music Online