Once Human: The Life I Remember

Ex-Machine Head man finds his muse and a ton of bombast

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Best known for being an original member of Machine Head, Logan Mader has spent a long time establishing himself as a producer.

As a result, his re-emergence with Once Human comes as a surprise, not least because The Life I Remember is so removed from both the pioneering crunch of Burn My Eyes and the American metal trends of the last 15 or so years. Focused around a collaboration with vocalist and artist Lauren Hart, these songs imagine a fresh metallic cross-pollination, as the cinematic, symphonic flourishes of epic blackness collide with a gleefully perverse reconstruction of melodic death and post-millennial groove.

Lauren’s voice is all fire and spite, a reptilian snarl that is never less than convincing, and her lyrics – whether on the startling hostility of You Cunt or the more nebulous tirades of Ground Zero – point to the birth of a significant talent. And there are killer riffs. This is a welcome lunge towards originality that strikes its targets more often than not.