Do you like head-banging? Do you like head-banging to time signatures that seem unhead-bangable to at first listen? That probably means you a fan of Meshuggah. I’m not a huge Meshuggah nerd, but I do appreciate what they’ve done for the metal scene. Before those dudes came around, metal was basically all 4/4, with the exception of some death metal stuff and the occasional prog metal band.
Face it, though…there was almost no prog metal scene worth mentioning before Meshuggah plugged in their 8 strings and started grooving riffs like CHUGCHUG CHU CHU CHUG CHUUUUUG CHUCHU CHUUUUG CHUG CHUG CH CH. So, although I don’t appreciate their music immensely (I probably should force myself to), I am really appreciative of what they have done for the evolution of heavy metal music as a genre.
I mean without them we wouldn’t have the best subgenres like djent and deathcore.
That was a joke, son.
One cool quasi-subgenre of metal that Meshuggah has had a pretty big influence on is metal that uses programmed instrumentation. After all, they are the dudes who backed the EZ Drummer dudes in making the Drumkit From Hell plug-in.
That being said, most of these bands in the quasi-subgenre will program their drums. Well, not Anup Sastry, a dude out of the Indian subcontinent who programmed everything but the drums.
You see ole Anup plays drums for Jeff Loomis, Intervals, and friggin’ Skyharbor. He released his solo album Ghost in March of this year, and, yeah, dude can program the hell out of some music. He’s also a technically great drummer, which is how he landed the gig with Jeff Loomis, I’m sure. I mean, it could be because he’s a super cool dude, but that’s not normally how getting jobs works.
I think the best part about Ghost is how it’s not a single CHUG note. There are melodies and they are pretty memorable, which is a tough threshold to cross when the picking scheme is so sporadic. If you want to see what I’m talking about, head to his Bandcamp and download his music for free.