Mediums and Messages LP
Kitchen Now Records
Street: 12.17
Parallax = The Dillinger Escape Plan + Shai Hulud + early Cave In
Mediums and Messages was originally released on CD in 2006, shortly after the tragic death of Parallax vocalist Blake Donner. Five years later, the band is reissuing the album on vinyl and playing one final show in Provo (with Jeff Jensen, who filled in on vocals for a year following Donner’s passing) before laying Parallax to rest. Experiencing Parallax with fresh ears (I had never heard the band before), Mediums and Messages stands out as a metalcore album with substance in a time when the genre was becoming vapid. Donner’s lyrics and vocal style are scathing, lashing out at the conservative culture in which we all exist. “Temple Shadows” is especially excellent, and “Surgery Without Sutures,” featuring spoken-word dialogue by Greg Bennick of Trial, fits with the rest of the album’s content surprisingly well. Donner’s impassioned vocals are bolstered by his technically proficient bandmates, whose time changes and breakdowns are performed in a way that is impressive, without being imposing. To top it all off, the vinyl version has been remastered and features awesome new artwork. Check out the band one last time and buy the record at Muse Music on Dec. 17.