Review: Voivod “Synchro Anarchy” [Century Media Records]

Review: Voivod “Synchro Anarchy” [Century Media Records]

- in Reviews

This is an album that’s weird and off in the best way possible, with distorted riffs, quirky vocals and strange stories.

This is immediately established in the first track, with its offbeat stop-start riffs, melodic verses, choruses with a more spoken-screamed delivery, with an odd nasal and raspy voice and a call-and-response last verse. This is a masterclass in songs where none of the parts seem to fit together but that’s what makes it so great.

The rest of the album is similar to this off-beat, cobbled-together intro. It has all the parts of Voivod’s unique style, like sci-fi themes, a strange, instantly recognizable nasal delivery, and a musical accompaniment that sounds like thrash metal with industrial touches, but played all wrong in a really cool and weird way, guitars with strange distortions that sometimes sound like guitars and sometimes like anything else but that. So it’s a band doing what they do best, with lots of creativity and memorable tracks.

Memorable tracks such as: the title track, with its fast thrash riffs that sound like a beeping machine, the ferocious “Planet Eaters” and its 80s nasal shouty vocals. This one is a rather creative throwback to the 80s thrash scene, just like the fast and fun “Sleeves Off”, with its weird guitar distortions and speak-sing vocals, or “The World Today” and its great bassline. There’s also the catchy thrash and power metal hybrid “Holographic Thinking”.  

But there’s room for experimentation, and that’s another moment where the album really shines. For that, there’s “Mind Clock”, with its slow, sinister verses, fast thrashy chorus and sinister slow ending. Or “Quest for Nothing”, a long complex track that’s not really about an epic power metal quest and has an overall less hopeful feel. And to end the album, there’s “Memory Failure”, its strange melody and changing vocal delivery.

Overall, this album is a really good selection of Voivod’s peculiar brand of thrash/prog/industrial/whatever style. There’s creativity and a good use of the band’s unique qualities. You’ll also get some very creative and well-made guitar work, enjoyably strange vocals, and interesting stories, about various unusual topics, sometimes without much hope and sometimes angrier. If you can get into something like this, you’ll have a great time.

Release date: February 11th, 2022

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About the author

Loves words and music. When not writing or reading reviews, she’s writing horror stories where music plays a part.

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