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Of Machines - As If Everything Was Held In... Album Cover

Of Machines - As If Everything Was Held In...

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5.3
Of Machines - As If Everything Was Held In Place
Record Label: Rise Records
Release Date: March 3, 2009
I had high hopes for Of Machines after they were signed to Rise Records. I fully expected them to release an album that showed a band full of potential and an aptitude for writing good, catchy metalcore. I was stoked for my first listen of As If Everything Was Held In Place and truly believed it would be everything I hoped it could be and more. Unfortunately, upon listening, I was left completely disappointed in a band I thought held quite a bit of potential.

While this album isn't bad by any means, it's just so terribly generic and re-hashed that I really don't know what to think of it. The band combine a perfect clone of Cove Reber's (Saosin) clean vocals with screaming and somewhat muddled structures. However, it doesn't really come off as inventive, and instead it sounds like exactly what you'd expect Burden Of a Day to sound like if they had Reber as a vocalist and pulled out some post-rock-esque instrumentation in the vein of Oceana. The vocals are so dead on it's uncanny, and while they do sound good most of the time the similarities are just too much to handle, and their clean vocalist doesn't have any sound of his own. While I've condoned quite a few generic bands in my day, this release doesn't have the push or quality to move it past that fact; it's simply forgettable no matter how much I'd rather it be otherwise.

I don't want to make it seem like the band is completely devoid of talent, but as far as having a "new" sound goes, they fail completely. There are some tracks that have impressive qualities, and they do well at building up pressure before releasing it in breakdowns.

The experimentation they incorporate is mainly in the vein of static-y electronics reminiscent of The Receiving End Of Sirens, as well as entertaining the aforementioned atmospheric instrumentation. Even these measures that most people are going to judge as groundbreaking don't cause the album to gain any creativity points, however, and while they do make some of the tracks sound somewhat interesting, I've just found myself completely underwhelmed by this release as a whole. There are tracks I like, but I've really been unable to find a reason to continue coming back to this album when I've got others on my mind.

Despite the album's numerous deficiencies, I'm sure it's probably going to catch on with quite a few people simply because it's a type of trendy metalcore. While I do applaud the band for stepping out of the norm with some of their instrumentation and such, it's still absolutely nothing new and doesn't have the saving grace of it being particularly great either. That is, had this album been phenomenal, albeit generic, it would have still seemed much more worth my anticipation. I had high hopes for this album, and I was unfortunately let down by the extremely generic vocal approach, lack of wholly impressive songs, and the overall mediocrity of the whole thing. While I contend that these guys are, in fact, plenty talented, their similarities to other bands in the genre override that, and overall, As If Everything Was Held In Place doesn't hold near the game-changing effect that I (and many others) believed it would.

Recommended If You LikeSaosin; Burden Of a Day; Oceana; A Skylit Drive

myspace.com/ofmachinestheband
This review is a user submitted review from Klatzke. You can see all of Klatzke's submitted reviews here.
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 19
09:53 AM on 03/19/09
#2
hockeyguitar99
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I feel like the review doesn't justify the scores. You really only seem to knock their creativity a lot, but a lot of the other categoreis are low as well. You also say you don't know what to think of it, impyling that your at the worst indifferent to the album, yet the reviewers tilt is at 2. Any how, aside from the score, this is a very well written review. Good job.
12:20 PM on 03/19/09
#3
Brett3
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Good review. I feel the same about this album.
12:22 PM on 03/19/09
#4
more heart
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Wow, this kinds of shocked me a bit. I do agree that the record wasn't great but by no means do I think it's bad. I know you're very strict when it comes to creativity but that score really surprised me a bit.
12:28 PM on 03/19/09
#5
Klatzke
Don't give me no hand me down love.
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I feel like the review doesn't justify the scores. You really only seem to knock their creativity a lot, but a lot of the other categoreis are low as well. You also say you don't know what to think of it, impyling that your at the worst indifferent to the album, yet the reviewers tilt is at 2. Any how, aside from the score, this is a very well written review. Good job.

Like i said, it's all pretty bland and generic. The instrumentation is probably the best facet, but as I said, the vocals are a Saosin copy and get extremely annoying because of it so that's why some of it is rated lower. As for the "don't know what to think of it".. 50% = Average. The reviewer tilt is so low to reflect that, because I wasn't going to be unfair to them by giving them terrible vocal/musicianship scores even though vocals did take a hit.

Wow, this kinds of shocked me a bit. I do agree that the record wasn't great but by no means do I think it's bad. I know you're very strict when it comes to creativity but that score really surprised me a bit.


Like I've said, I'm willing to give bands a few creativity points if they're pushing something that's very good for being generic to up the overall score. This, however, to me, is extremely bland and doesn't really justify upping the score. As well, it got that low in the first place because besides being fairly generic and mediocre, the complete vocal knockoff and their lack of creativity in that region completely blew that score out. 50% is supposed to mean average, and I truly expected this to score high 40s low 50s so it ended up about right. I said in-text that it wasn't bad but that it's a complete letdown and is in no way justifiably a "great" album.
12:32 PM on 03/19/09
#6
more heart
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Like I've said, I'm willing to give bands a few creativity points if they're pushing something that's very good for being generic to up the overall score. This, however, to me, is extremely bland and doesn't really justify upping the score. As well, it got that low in the first place because besides being fairly generic and mediocre, the complete vocal knockoff and their lack of creativity in that region completely blew that score out. 50% is supposed to mean average, and I truly expected this to score high 40s low 50s so it ended up about right. I said in-text that it wasn't bad but that it's a complete letdown and is in no way justifiably a "great" album.
Yeah I get what you're trying to say. My biggest problem with this record was what Handraa found too. This record just belends together way too much. It seems as if every song could be a continuation of the last.
12:35 PM on 03/19/09
#7
Klatzke
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Yeah I get what you're trying to say. My biggest problem with this record was what Handraa found too. This record just belends together way too much. It seems as if every song could be a continuation of the last.
Yeah, I just thought that overall it was extremely mediocre for what I expected it to be. The Saosin-esque vocals really got on my nerves as well, and as he said, it all blends together terribly and that's where it came up with "bland."
12:06 AM on 03/21/09
#8
PureBlueSF
ur not even pop punk
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This is a well written review, and even though I would personally rate it in the mid 70's or so, I can kinda see where you're coming from. The clean vocalist does sound almost too much like Cove Reber and at some points his voice gets annoyingly high, like in the last 30 seconds of Things Too Visible to See (the "Sailing around the room" part). Still, this is much better than most of the crap Rise usually signs.
10:00 AM on 03/21/09
#9
batmannj
"No more half measures Walt"
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On first listen I enjoyed this, but like you say in the review, it just kind of gets bland and forgettable.
02:46 PM on 03/21/09
thursday8605
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ill politely disagree with this review.
10:26 PM on 03/21/09
abellaw
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I like this album a lot but i definately agree with what you say about them sounding a lot like oceana and a skylit drive, and the vocals sound too similar to saosin in my opinion. Personally i would put it in the upper 70's. At timesi forgot what band i was listening too, My favourite song was sailing alone around the room i dont know something about it just does it for me.

But klatzke i love your reviews and this is no exception well done for another great review.
07:40 AM on 03/22/09
from debris
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i never understood the hype for this band
01:36 PM on 03/23/09
the daniel
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Good review, I beleive the scores should be a tad bit higher thats all.
12:50 PM on 03/28/09
tottivillarossi
these pretzels are makin me thirsty
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I thought you were too harsh in all honesty.
12:51 PM on 03/28/09
Klatzke
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I thought you were too harsh in all honesty.
I respect your opinion of that, but it's how I felt about the album. And obviously a few people felt the same way I did throughout this thread.

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