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Album Review

After Miss Machine, Dillinger Escape Plan fans were divided. Many of the folks who were attached to the screaming mathematical metal of Calculating Infinity bailed on the band, disapproving of the experimental musical direction and the meathead appearance of new singer/screamer Greg Puciato. Open-minded listeners were excited about the progressive journey they were taking and many critics hailed the group as a true innovator of metalcore. Ire Works succeeds in many of the same ways that their previous album did, while branching out creatively. They continue to toy with technical metal, blistering hardcore, jazz breaks, and post-punk, but here they evolve again by adding more twists and turns with additional electronic elements. While the merging of too many styles in hardcore can make for a convoluted result (see Avenged Sevenfold's self-titled release), the added instruments and genre changeups enhance the result rather than acting as ornamental distractions. Edgy Aphex Twin-style drill'n'bass drum breaks and stretched and squeezed electro blips feel strangely at home next to the psychotic time-signature changes and manic riffs, especially on the tracks "Sick on Sunday," "Dead as History," and "When Acting as a Wave." Violins, pianos, and trumpets sit nicely in the mix, and the group's willingness to take chances leads to stunning artistic endeavors rather than stale attempts at crossing genres just for the sake of being clever. Original vocalist Dimitri Minakakis makes an appearance, as does Mastodon guitarist Brent Hinds, but the most notable inclusion is drummer Gil Sharone, who proves himself an expert at picking up the slack after the departure of founding member Chris Pennie to play in Coheed and Cambria. Undoubtedly, this act added anger to fuel the fire of their heavier numbers. "82588," "Fix Your Face," and "Party Smasher" are as wicked and manic as their most difficult earlier stuff; conversely, the melodic hooks and falsetto of "Black Bubblegum" and the watery ambience of "Mouth of Ghosts" balance out the album nicely. It can be inaccessible and terrifying all at once, but in a genre overly saturated with formulaic groups, Ire Works is a true standout. If DEP aren't careful and continue down this innovative path, they could easily be labeled the Radiohead of metalcore. A visceral metal album that pushes the envelope? Who would have thunk it?

Customer Reviews

Progressive and Entertaining

OK I never really heard of The Dillinger Escape Plan before i decided to go to a Killswitch concert and saw they were goming to be there to. i got this album to prepare for the concert and i was blown away. I'm a big fan of progressive stuff like Rush and Dream Theater and the best way I can describe DEP is Dream Theater on crack, meth, pcp, and steroids. They're simply insane! I can't even start to figure out some of the time signatures, and it seems like they change signatures every 5 seconds. Not to mention that not one song sounds like any other that they play. they all are clearly DEP, but they all have their own flavor. they've got talent. YOU CANNOT GET MOE PROGRESSIVE THAN THIS BAND! I plan on immediatley getting their other albums and look forward to more DEP

DEP at their new best

The new drummer adds a new dynamic to the band's overall sound - over the years they have been in a state of progression from the chaotic math-core of Calculating Infinity, through vocalist changes and in my humble opinion have still retained what makes them one of the greatest and most influential bands in recent years. They have a deep passion to their songs that so many of their knock-off, wannabe counterparts never truly realize - it's not just about the off-tempo rhythms and "seeing just how crazy we can make this sound" - it's about delivering a sonic blow to your senses that still hits you in areas that the sound itself can't reach. It's that untangible element that seperates DEP from the rest of the pack. With so many bands out there trying desperately to jump on the latest hardcore/punk bandwagon, and putting out garbage, it is refreshing to hear the original masters at their best - truly a masterpiece. Thanks DEP.

ire works

dillinger escape plan > everyone else. best album of 2007.


Formed: 1997 in Morris Plain, NJ

Genre: Metal

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

The Dillinger Escape Plan create maniacally intense, crushingly metallic, and decidedly hardcore punk-infused jazz-time-signature-invoking compositions displaying an unparalleled musical bravery, precision musicianship, meticulously thought-out and complex structuring, and rigorous physical endurance. The band's guitarists and drummer are regular features in publications geared toward the guitar- and drum-playing set. The depth of extremity and mental challenge presented by their music virtually...
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