Motograter is a band that diehard fans of the early 2000’s Nu-Metal/Heavy Rock era would be familiar with. A band that were at the forefront both as a live act, with their menacing tribal body paint and hard edged grooves; Motograter also featured Ivan Moody (Five Finger Death Punch) as vocalist on their debut album, before the band would endure line-up changes and a hiatus of sorts. Fast forward to now, and the band are not just back. They are back triumphantly and armed with a new album called Desolation, following up on the 2003 self-titled release that featured Moody. Live, these guys are a sight and a half, who bring one of the most brutal live shows both theatrically and musically. So the big question. Does Desolation capture the chaos? Read on…

Opening with the insanely good ‘Parasite’, all the trademark grooves explode out of the gate, before vocalist Legion unleashes some deep guttural tones in the verses. The melodic soar of the chorus takes this track to great heights as a suitable opener. Legion really shines on this album as a truly original style of vocalist with incomparable tones that work great with the chunky grooves. ‘Dorian’ keeps the flow of the album progressive with a real prog feel and haunting chorus that just excites the senses. The Karnivool vibe in the verses is dramatic and well delivered, again complimented by Legion’s voice. Drummer Noah lays it thick on this track and the production is all class, with a thumbs up to Ahrue Luster( Ill Nino/ex Terror Universal/Machine Head), who handles the production duties on the album. The tasteful riffs that open ‘Victim’ by guitarist Nuke settle into a solid number that will keep any pit alive with the sound of music. Following on is ‘Paragon’, a track that is just heavy, deep and punches hard with the verse keeping a solid tempo building into another soaring moment of the trademark style of chorus, that Motograter seem to pull off with ease.

‘Bleeding Through’ brings the more mellow side of the band with a nice smack to the senses in the chorus. This is definitely one of the intricately well-written songs that appear on this 11 track effort. The band manages to blend the darkness and melancholy of Legion’s persona with restraint where needed, and this blends well from this track into ‘Misanthropical’, that builds with intensity and unleashes in all the right places. The verses, so delicate and warm, complimented by a well-structured and carnivorous chorus, layered with an exciting bridge that will get bodies slamming and heads banging. ‘Daggers’ holds its own as a solid mid-tempo track with a rich chorus, and the mechanical production of the bass and drums really stands out delightfully on this track especially. The guitar solo on this is a great addition to another well-written track. ‘Portrait of Decay’ has a real familiarity to it, that many will dig, and the guys have taken the chorus to great heights, in contrast to the heaviness of the verses that will put smiles on dials of those who love it heavy with a dramatic twist. Things continue to get exciting on ‘Locust’, with a nice industrial tinged introduction, before Legion holds court and carries the track with his impressively heavy vocal tones, matched by his unique melodic range that made this a fun and slightly epic track to listen to. The intensely driven ‘Rise (There Will Be Blood)’ has such an amazing pace and groove to it, with kudos to the production again from Luster in capturing the excitement these guys generate live. This track stands out as one of the true highlights on the album with all its punishing drive and anthem saturated content that make this worthy. Ending with ‘Shadows’, Motograter have proven their return is no mere feat to sneeze at. They have toured hard and endured a hard journey that many bands on the road extensively could relate to. But with Desolation, the band have harnessed all that emotion and energy and poured it into this very impressive effort that has already enjoyed Billboard chart success recently. Well done brothers! And to answer the initial question. Desolation captures the chaos of this powerful band and offers fans another great example of the quality of Nu-Metal/ Heavy Rock that never went away. By today’s standards, it’s refreshing to know bands like Motograter exist and people have just been served one hell of a reminder.