Voivod: Target Earth

A new era with freshened ideas.

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This is arguably the most difficult album of Voivod’s career, being the first they’ve recorded with no input from late guitarist Piggy. As such it could have sunk them, because he was so crucial to their sound.

However, Daniel ‘Chewy’ Mongrain, Piggy’s replacement, has come close to working wonders. While he pays due homage to his predecessor’s style, he’s added his own pugnacious and concussively virtuoso colouring. The result is not a reinvention of Voivod, but a reimagining.

The science-fiction lyrical themes are as enthralling as ever, while the musical approach runs the gamut from avant-garde thrash fury to intricate, complex progression. From the opening fractured rhythms of the title track through to the sparse grandeur of Mechanical Mind and the blaring finale of Artefact and Defiance, this is a riveting album. Voivod have again recorded something that will appeal to those with an open mind.

Malcolm Dome

Malcolm Dome had an illustrious and celebrated career which stretched back to working for Record Mirror magazine in the late 70s and Metal Fury in the early 80s before joining Kerrang! at its launch in 1981. His first book, Encyclopedia Metallica (opens in new tab), published in 1981, may have been the inspiration for the name of a certain band formed that same year. Dome is also credited with inventing the term "thrash metal" while writing about the Anthrax song Metal Thrashing Mad in 1984. With the launch of Classic Rock magazine in 1998 he became involved with that title, sister magazine Metal Hammer, and was a contributor to Prog magazine since its inception in 2009.