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Voivod - Angel Rat

1991 MCA Records :: Reviewed by rofreason on 2005-07-14

After recreating the face of metal with Nothingface, Voivod chose to change direction completely and release one of their most accessible albums to date. The biggest change here is in the vocals. The robotic drones are replaced by actual singing, albeit lighter and less powerful. The overall feel is much warmer than Nothingface, and this is due to a return to analog recording, and the use of Terry Brown (Rush, Fates Warning) as producer. While fans screamed sell-out, what really happened here is that Voivod managed to write personal metal edged rock songs that still hold the technicality apparent in each album. Piggy again breaks new ground with mixes of mechanical crunching riffs and solos that just float over the rest of the music. Unfortunately, Blacky decided to leave the band during/after this recording, and while the liner notes credit his work, he is not placed here as a member of the band. This comes at a time where his playing is really recognized, standing strong behind the guitar melodies. Away's drumming has improved here again, and he always plays what is necessary, allowing the song to come through. While this album was an initial disappointment to myself and many longtime fans, after years of listening, it has grown to be one of my favorite albums by them, very sad and personal. Another crowning achievement.