How many bands do you know that can take the blueprint for heavy music and rip it to shreds? Well, get ready to add Reflex Machine to that list. Locking themselves in a house in Columbus, Ohio, the duo beat the proverbial shit out of drums and bass to concoct their debut full-length Interzone. What emerges puts a prism to ‘post-metal’; this is quite unlike the garden variety, going out-of-bounds to circle back around with several other variants of metal in tow.
Hats off to James. Who knew that a bass could make so many sounds? The record is littered with noodling lines, thick sludge, tremolo to make Fenriz blush, wall-of-sound, and plenty more besides. Alex is no slacker on drums either, as he cooks up a storm that borrows as much from trad-doom’s power as it does from 90s groove metal. Both of them put in work on vocals as well, with myriad screeches, yells, growls and cleans to do justice to the warped concept on which the album is based.
And what a concept it is: the horrifying realities of a disavowed cop named Jones facing himself and his sordid past through the absurdly demented A.I. of a futuristic force of unfathomable cruelty – a sentient building known as Interzone. The album launches on an unsettling note, and never lets up until “Mugwump” lumbers into view with all its psychedelic sludge – after the listener has been battered with Sumac-level intensity (“Framed”) and mind-melding rhythms that call forth At The Drive-In (“Machina”).
In case all of this sounds like Reflex Machine have left a lot to chew on, it’s entirely intentional. If the notion of a lovechild between Sumac, early Mastodon, Neurosis, and At the Drive-In sounds of interest, then “Interzone” will be right up your alley – or lurking in one nearby.
Reflex Machine are:
Alex is on drums and vocals.
James is on bass and vocals
Read our review here.