MESHIAAK – Alliance of Thieves
OUT: 19th August, 2016
MESHIAAK Line Up:
Danny Camilleri | vocals, guitars
Nick Walker | bass
Dean Wells | guitar, vocals
Jon Dette | drums
It was only three years ago that Australian band, 4Arm was playing at Madison Square Garden, New York in support of thrash legends, Slayer. A little band named, Gojira were also on the bill those dates. A few months earlier 4Arm was a part of the Testament and Overkill U.S tour. However not long after these incredible highs, 4Arm was over. Front man, Danny Tomb (now Danny Camilleri) removed himself from the band for reasons unknown to those outside the inner sanctum and whilst 4Arm continued, they would never be the same.
It was 2014 when Meshiaak was first mooted by Camilleri. Three years has past and finally the band have assembled 9 songs to create their debut album, Alliance of Thieves. The wait is over and all I can say is wow!….it was definitely worth the wait. Meshiaak, hebrew for ‘Messsiah’ are a four prong metal attack blending the combined forces of four experienced, skilful, yet unique talents. Danny Camilleri is still as powerful, vocally, as he was with 4Arm’s last album, the sublime, Submission For Liberty, however his song writing has never been as deep or soul searching as found on this record. Joining him on guitars and adding a nice harmony and clean vocal to some tracks is another Australian, Dean Wells from the band Teramaze. With scything riffs and duelling solos with Camilleri, Wells is a great addition to Meshiaak. Rounding out the rhythmic section are bassist, Nick Walker and the immensely talented, Jon Dette (formerly of Slayer, Anthrax, Testament), whose personal performance of Alliance of Thieves is outstanding.
Musically the band are much more than a 4Arm extension. The band’s influences are clear, an eclectic mix of 90s heavy metal infusing all that fans love about such metal luminaries as Machine Head, Trivium, Slayer, Bullet for my Valentine (old stuff) and Metallica. From the heavy riffs to thrash to a few harmonies, Alliance of Thieves has enough variant within to appease any metal fan reared up on 90s metal and more than likely have the heads banging for those keen for some straight up riffage.
‘Chronicles of the Dead’ kick starts the album, a track that sounds like that 4Arm next chapter you anticipated, a cracking intro doused in more the thrash genre, Camilleri attacking with his Tom Araya scowl. ‘It Burns At Both Ends’ continues in a similar vein, hammering along at frantic speed, the production crisp and the sound just engulfs the amp.
‘I Am Among You’ blends more light and shade, forceful when it needs to be then the bridge and clean vocals lend it to a more Machine Head kind of feel. The killer solo simply shreds. First single, ‘Drowning, Fading, falling’, my personal favourite track of the album, engages the listener with its tranquil beginning reaching that metal crescendo, as Dette’s pulsating drum s pound into the riff.
Meshiaak continue to broaden themselves into melody and harmony as ‘At the Edge of the World’ lends itself to the most ‘radio friendly’ track on the album. Still heavy as fuck especially when Camilleri opens up later into the track, ‘At the End of the World’ is the type of song that could see Meshiaak explode across Europe/America with the right exposure. In fact, the further you go into Alliance of Thieves the more impressed you can’t help becoming, from the harsher then clean vocal harmonies between Camilleri and Wells, the killer solos and as stated before, Jon Dette’s work behind the drum kit this album which is phenomenal.
After a few more thrash orientated tracks, including the killer title track, the album concludes with a part acoustic/part metal track, ‘Death of an Anthem’. Soulful metal, another searching harmony and again more heavy riffage. The Meshiaak wait is over and the result is outstanding. I can’t wait to see what’s next for this band should they wish to take the step into a full blown touring juggernaut both in Australia and internationally. A stunning debut.
9.5 Shredding solos out of 10
1. Chronicles of the Dead
2. It Burns at Both Ends
3. I Am Among You
4. Drowning, Fading, Falling
5. At the Edge of the World
6. Last Breath Taken
8. Alliance of Thieves
9. Death of an Anthem
– James Birkin (@Plugga73)
** check out some the tracks released by Meshiaak in the lead up to the release below