It’s third time lucky for Decortica which is not to say the first two albums are not worth hearing, that’s not the case at all. This is a band that has been honing its sound – moving towards its goal – since 2005 and now, with new album 11811, the Auckland-based band perfectly realises a vision/version of metal that is driving and pulsing, constantly seeking and searching, never leaden; arguably it’s metal rather than heavy metal – but let’s not assign it to (just) the metal genre because there’s rock and post-rock and math-rock ideas here.
And if you check out Helix you might have some idea of where (the best bits of) nu-metal could have gone if it wasn’t concerned with selling jeans and appearing in movies/appealing to mall-rats.
There’s a Cornell-type scream here and there is something of a leaner (meaner?) Mastodon too. But where 11811 really delivers is in the fact that it’s short and sharp but never unnecessarily brutal. There is heart and soul within these songs. In fact there are songs – that’s a start; often that’s the biggest struggle for music that identifies with (modern) metal. The Cookie Monster vocals and attempts at being heavy seem to be the main focus of so many heavy rock/metal acts now – but what about the songs? And here Decortica offers its best set (so far). And I like that the album is lean, angular – almost indie-pop inspired, arguably. It doesn’t stick around to bore – the job is done. And it leaves you (well, me, in this case) satisfied. And wanting more. That’s a good thing. And a rare thing. I really like this album.