This morning I woke up wanting to listen to some Meshuggah. I don’t know, I guess I just wanted some tight riffs and technical grooves. But a couple songs into Obzen, I was in the mood for Dillinger Escape Plan. Instead, I put on a slightly less known band … Car Bomb.
Their 2016 album Meta is a personal favorite. Their crushing technical licks and pounding bass, mixed with a versatile frontman and a rocket scientist drummer, click together to form a straight-jacket-tight group that switches paces quickly enough to keep my ADHD brain interested.
As far as style, they aren’t particularly revolutionary. They appear to draw the majority of their musical influence specifically from Meshuggah, Dillinger, and Gojira. With grinding hooks and intensity that recalls the heaviness and power of Meshuggah, the vocalist’s screams reflect Jens Kidman’s own, but clean up for a very “Gojira” effect. Add to that the technical tightness and wild trippiness of Dillinger Escape Plan, it’s a rock solid formula that keeps drawing me back.
One of the things that particularly stands out about this group to me is their rhythm. I have a background in jazz and rhythm is always a huge thing for me but the strong, almost spastic beats provide more than a spine for the geometric muscle of this sound. A good drummer will keep time. A really good drummer will be able handle anything you throw at them. But Elliot Hoffman, the drummer for Car Bomb, not only supports the band and their mathematical twists and turns but also infuses his own flavor that adds to the music not as a puzzle piece player but as a main feature on his own.
Overall, they might not be anything revolutionary as far as sound goes. But the strength and intensity mixed with monster riffs and hell-raising screams make for a powerhouse of a band. Hope to see them in Seattle soon.