Band:MEGACONE Song: ‘Absolute Magnitude’ Genre: Progressive instrumental Date of release: 29/02/16 Location: Ireland Reviewer: Matthew Byrne For Fans Of: Cloudkicker
Okay, before I get into this review, I feel like it’s my duty to bring to your attention a very serious issue which has the potential to affect the entire world. No, I’m not talking about global warming. No, I’m not talking about how half of the world’s total wealth is in the hands of only 1% of the population, whilst the lower and middle classes continue their seemingly endless struggle to make ends meet. And no, I’m not talking about how it’s an eerily real possibility that Donald Trump could very well be the 45th President of the United States – I’m talking about something far, far larger. Obviously.
What I’m talking about – well, what I’m wondering more so – is why, for some god damn reason, people think it is okay to have three or more guitarists in one band. There are very, very few artists who write music complex or dense enough to warrant such a scenario, and before you say anything, no – Periphery are not one of them. It’s something I’ve noticed becoming more and more prevalent over the years and it’s completely and utterly unnecessary. For the love of all things good in the world, just stop.
Phew, okay. Deep breaths, Matt. You’re writing a review. Get a hold of yourself.
Okay, so now that that’s out of the way, let us move on. Today, we’re looking at the latest single, ‘Absolute Magnitude’, from Irish instrumental prog-heads, Megacone. Let me first preface this review by saying, I know absolutely nothing about this band. If you expected professional-grade background info and research, well … shit man, I don’t know what to tell you.
Bear with me here whilst I describe to you a poorly thought out metaphor to explain how I feel about ‘Absolute Magnitude’. Imagine a balloon attached to a string, now fill that balloon with good ideas. In this case, good ideas are helium. Now, before that balloon full of good ideas has the chance to run free and live a life of its own, tie it to the ground with a weight. That’s ‘Absolute Magnitude’. It’s obvious Megacone are talented guys full of great ideas, it’s just that they’re letting themselves down by writing without focus or direction, and lacklustre production. Those good ideas are not going anywhere because they’re mixed in with so much other musical nonsense that could, in all honesty, just be thrown in the bin.
I really want to like ‘Absolute Magnitude’, and by all rights I should – it ticks a lot of the boxes for things that I like in music. It attempts to blend post-rock stylings with instrumental progressive-metal song structures, whilst also containing melodies which are accessible and rhythms that are fun. It’s just that … I’ve seen it all before. There’s nothing here that’s going to make me remember this band in two or three days’ time. ‘Absolute Magnitude’ is good, but there’s nothing here that is going to make me reach for Megacone over something like Cloudkicker, for example. Even the upbeat section in the middle of the track, with the off-beat disco drum beat, couldn’t even win me over. Actually, if the song had more of that and less “prog band trying to be a post-rock band”, I’d probably like it a hell of a lot more, especially considering the section before that was some kind of faux doom riff with possibly some of the worst guitar tones I’ve heard in a very long time.
At the risk of rambling on and on for thousands of words, I’m going to end this review with some advice for Megacone and really small bands everywhere (because writing for a blog on the internet makes me an expert in all things music) – if you want to be a prog band, just be a prog band. If you want to be a post-rock band, just be a post-rock band. If you want to marry two styles together, you better be damn sure you can do it well, because otherwise, you’re going to look like you’re driving without a map to a destination you don’t know, only to find someone else has beaten you to it and they’ve done a hell of a better job than you.