|We Be The Echo – Masks
1. Wilhelm Scream Dream Team
2. Droid Poem
3. MC WarHammer
4. Miles Davis Dials Mavis
5. Where’s The MacGuffin?/Masks II
6. The Basic Remit Of Flight
7. Tyrannical Sound Engines
8. Shallowed Be Thy Game
Think all instrumental metal has to be epically downbeat? Think again, because We Be The Echo have, and they’re about to fire a technicolour missile set straight for the heart of your expectations.
As is apparent from the song titles, there’s a whole heap of exuberance here. The opening cut bounces along like System of a Down before they went flat, with a restless jinking riff that’s shot through with a dose of Lightning Bolt’s chaotic genius, and the kind of right-handed flurry last seen on a spotty teenager watching a Nigella Lawson special. ‘Droid Poem’ is only slightly less chaotic, with a techno-babble riff over a binary bass run; a further surprise comes from the discovery that this band is only a three piece, which just shows how fearsomely tight a unit they are - a point proven on ‘Where’s the MacGuffin?/Masks II’, which sounds like Battles filtered through a Primus lens. This slightly deranged aspect is further hammered home during the “Miles Davis Dials Mavis’, which combines the miracle of combing Mastodon-style splurges with laid back dub. It’s bonkers, and it’s great.
You need further proof this is a talented outfit? Try ‘The Basic Remit Of Flight’, which puts paid to any former notions you had about synchronicity, since they casually drop in and out of each other’s orbits like Amy Winehouse drops in and out of rehab. At this point, you start to realise their self-anointed label of “shred-prog” is about a close a handle as you’re likely to get on this trio. If you need something different to jazz up your otherwise dull life, pick this slice of high spirited fun.
Reviewed by Steve Jones
‘Masks’ is out now on Chuckbeat Records