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Robb Flynn Says the New Machine Head Album Will Be Slower, Less Heavy, and More Melodic

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At this point, I think Machine Head have made it pretty clear that they have range. Still, given that metalheads are not always the most, er, open-minded of fans, I can’t help to wonder how they’re gonna react to this update on the new Machine Head album, Catharsis, which Robb Flynn offered up earlier this week (transcript via The PRP):

“Lower your expectations for the heaviness, lower your expectations for the speed. This is… If ‘The Blackening’ was us at our most thrashing and aggressive, this is probably the most melodic and the most grooving we’ve been.

“There’s little thrashy bits here and there and it’s heavy, but it is a very groovin’, rocking melodic record.

“I’m telling you that, because I don’t want everybody to think that we’re dropping fucking ‘Reign in Blood.’ And I could tell you that if I wanted to, I could make motherfuckers think that we were dropping the heaviest 29 minutes of music ever, but this isn’t. This isn’t. And I want to be realistic with you and I want to be honest with you. It’s very melodic… For no reason in particular we just decided to write some groovin’, melodic songs and it’s fucking good man. It’s just really, really songs.

“A lot of the songs are shorter. We got a couple of epics—of course we have to have a Machine Head epic, or two, or three. But it’s some good shit man, I’m really fucking excited…

“I think it’s going to have two or three songs that are absolutely instant, and I think there’s gonna be quite a few songs that people on first listen are gonna be like ‘Hmmm, I don’t know about this.’

And in a month, or two months, it’s gonna be, you’re gonna be, you know: ‘That’s some fucking good shit man.’”

Tempering expectations when you’re heading in a new musical direction is not a guaranteed way to make sure fans come along for the ride — just ask poor Suicide Silence, who were upfront for months in advance about their most recent album was going to sound and yet still got creamed by fans. Still, you gotta give Flynn props for not just coming out and giving the usual “We’re making our br00talest record ever!” spiel.

It’s also worth noting that the brief sample of new music we got to hear last month did not sound like it was at all lacking in heaviness. But who knows; maybe that song isn’t gonna make the album’s final cut, or has undergone drastic changes since we heard it. Or maybe Robb Flynn’s tolerance for heaviness is so now so strong that anything which isn’t Suffocation seems melodic to him.

Regardless, I’d put my money on the album being really, really good. If some people can’t hang, well, fuck ’em.

We still don’t know when the record will be released, but presumably, it will be somewhere in the vicinity of January 2018, when the band launches their next ‘An Evening With…’ tour. Get dates here.

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