Power of Metal.dk Review

Inside of the Machine
Style: Progressive Metal
Release date: 11 October, 2013
Playing time: 71:44

There are some bands that are too easy to describe. When this happens, I get somewhat disappointed. So, aside from the awesome artwork, I feel that the new release from progressive metal band Assignment is average and rather unoriginal. There, I pretty much set my opinion out there from the beginning.

Yes, Germany's Assignment have released their new album entitled "Inside of the Machine". These guys are far and away influenced by Symphony X. Yet, I would call them Symphony X Lite, as they feature all of the chanting, choirs, stuttering riffs, and hard edges, but they feature none of the technicality or the virtuosity. Indeed, thrashiness is there, but not in an enjoyable fashion. Now, I'm not sure if this is purposeful or not, but I was unimpressed with the instrumental abilities presented on this record. For the most part, we get standard blast beats, some reconfigured riffs that always sound a little too familiar, and un-melodic vocals that border on annoying sometimes. Now, there is a wide array of vocalists here, including a female singer. I feel that she saves the vocals quite a bit, and she even makes some of the tracks, such as "Walk Alone", rather pleasant.

It is when the band is focusing on dissimilar tracks that they really shine. For the most part, the album is all the same. However, sometimes they attempt a more ethnic, melodic approach with some actual soul involved, and it really works! Especially on the last four tracks, I feel they achieved some sort of originality that was great to hear. "Eternal Silence, for example, is probably the best track on the album with its really STRONG vocal lines and interesting keys. However, I think the album was already lost in the void of average long before these tracks arrive.

So, for Symphony X fans that want something a little slower, I would recommend this heartily. Yet, for me, this album is hopelessly normal, and cannot break out of it though there are some good tracks near the end.

01. Upload the System (6:04)
02. The Intrusion (4:08)
03. I Am the Machine (5:00)
04. Resistance (4:50)
05. Love Between Heaven and Hell (4:15)
06. The Betrayal (3:32)
07. Messiahs Fall (4:16)
08. Ending Love (5:04)
09. Another Sacrifice (4:49)
10. Electric City (Home of the Machine) (4:43)
11. Walk Alone (4:42)
12. Eternal Silence (5:36)
13. Bug in the System (3:42)
14. End of the Machine (6:06)
15. Nowhere Fast (Bonus Track) (4:57)
Label: Mausoleum Records
Distribution: H'Art
Artwork rating: 90/100
Reviewed by: Jason Spencer
Date: 1 November, 2013
Website: www.assignment-music.com