MNHM: Of Empires Past

Just released on Consouling Sounds, Of Empires Past is the second full length album by Dutch quartet MNHM. For this one they enlisted the help of Rocky O’Reilly (And So I Watch You From Afar) who co-produced the album alongside the band.

Not entirely easy to digest, and certainly not recommended for those who don't enjoy extreme doses of emphatic heaviness balanced with post rock's given sentimentality, the combative and bold style of MNHM (previously Mannheim) appears unparalleled to most of what the genre has offered the last couple of years. 

Based mostly on the conformity of post rock's formalities, but enhanced with generous chunks of noise rock, math rock and even extreme metal, Of Empires Past, does not restrain its powerful liveliness for its entirety of nine instrumental tracks. Conversely the album sounds like a venturous expedition from euphony to dissonance, with its second half being the most melodramatic hence superbly emotional part of the album. That is about when key track, Rule Of Law, drops in to eradicate everything in its path, followed by false impressions of calmness, dismay and even more mellifluous demolition, until it all ends in the sweet cataclysm of closing track Coronation.

To call the whole concept "progressive" would be accurate, but not entirely fair, since MNHM's grit seems to be overcoming the boundaries of the genre. "Radical" though, that's a good word for it.


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