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[Off The Record]
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Like Helmet before them, Brooklyn’s Candiria use their conservatory-honed chops to fashion a cerebral take on metallic hardcore. But they’re far more blatant in their eclecticism than Helmet ever were: hip-hop freestyle sessions, somber electronic interludes, and authentic fusion breakdowns are all fair game on 300 Percent Density. For the most part, they like to separate the rap from the metal, laying down spare, ominous live rhythms on the standout posse cut " Words from the Lexicon. " They keep the tempo slow enough on the heavy stuff that singer Carley Coma’s angry bark could almost get them mistaken for a commercial rap-metal act, except the noise changes direction way too often. They occasionally stumble across some nice touches on the jazz end (the Bitches Brew–style delayed trumpet on " Contents Under Pressure " ), but too often their fusion side comes off as an ill-advised gimmick — think Allan Holdsworth jamming with Hatebreed, then switch to the next track. Coma is equally effective as a screamer and a bookish MC, managing to get the same sense of impending doom across either way. The album is a confounding mix somewhere between pretentious and ahead of its time. But probably closer to the latter.

(Candiria headline the Middle East downstairs this Sunday, May 27. Call 617-864-EAST.)


Issue Date: May 24 - 30, 2001

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