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Djent is djead. The once-interesting subgenre, like so many before it, has been ruined by too many bands that all sound the same, don’t have anything even vaguely original to contribute, and have valued a sound over basic songwriting skills. What everyone forgets about Periphery, Cloudkicker, etc. — y’know, the cool djent bands — is that they don’t just make lotsa djenty noises; they also write shit which is catchy and fun to listen to. Now I hear all these bands that have the same guitar tone as Meshuggah and none of that group’s brilliance.

So where does that leave poor Vildhjarta, the Swedish djenters who I actually really like, and whose Century debut, Måsstaden, is coming out next month?

Måsstaden has got some really good songs on it, some djent that is, again, actually great; it also some stuff on it that I don’t exactly love. But I’ve listened to it twice now, and enjoyed it enough that I wanna listen to it again and make sure I’m giving it the fairest possible chance; I would also love to see the band in a live setting and see how they stack up in that regard. That’s more than I can say for most of their peers.

Now the Rickard Westman-created album art for Måsstaden has been released (above), and like the album itself, I mostly like it, but can’t give it a glowing recommendation. In this case, because it’s so dark — not “dark” in a Nachtmystium/songs about drug addiction kinda way, but “dark” in a “Hey someone turn on the damn lights!” kinda way. I’ve made my computer monitor as bright as it will get, and that little creature dude in the front certainly looks bad-assed, but I can’t make out much more than. Maybe I’m just getting old and blind. I dunno see what you think.

Century will release Måsstaden on November 29. Vildhjarta will part of the MetalSucks-sponsored Euroblast, a 2-day, 2-stage festival in Cologne on the 21st and 22nd of October. Mnemic, Textures, TesseracT, and a whole buncha other cool bands are also on the bill. Get more details here.


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