VIRUS – Memento Collider
The Norwegian three-piece known as Virus has to be one of the most unique and innovative bands to have emerged following the turn of the millennium. The band’s strange and compelling blend of avant-garde rock, progressive rock, psychedelic hard rock, and just about anything else you can possibly think of, is definitely something out of the ordinary.
"Memento Collider" is the fourth full-length mind-rape spawned by these guys, and it may actually be their best musical output to date. The six songs that constitute the album are not only captivating and stimulating to listen to, but also highly addictive. What really appeals to me is that Virus is able to walk that fine line between being catchy and memorable on the one hand and yet extremely challenging and progressive on the other. Very few bands have ever managed to accomplish that. Voivod and King Crimson come to mind, and now that I think about it, there is a lot of those two bands present in Virus as well. Actually, Voivod guitarist Dan Mongrain has added a solo to "Memento Collider", so there you go.
The theatrical vocals have rarely sounded better. The songs are all dynamic and groovy while the moods and atmospheres within each and every track is otherworldly and unsettling. The bass lines are brilliant while the melodies are strong. The arrangements are clever, and, needless to say, the songs constantly shift and turn in true Virus fashion, making them delightfully unpredictable to try to absorb. I also have to hand it to drummer Einz; his excellent drumming has never sounded more lively and dramatic than here. Picking out any favorite songs is a waste of time as they are all extremely cool, and besides, the album is meant to be experienced as a whole from start to finish. None of that pick-and-choose-and-compile-a-playlist shit that all the youngsters are into today. By the way, the lyrics are sublime too, but those should be experienced by you and not described by me.
Regardless of what genre you are into and your musical preferences and all of that crap, I strongly urge you to check "Memento Collider" out. I dare say that it will appeal to fans of all kinds of genres and sub-genres. Like I said, "Memento Collider" is without a shadow of doubt my favorite album by the band so far, and there is nothing quite like this stuff out there…and you can quote me on that! If for some pathetically lame reason you harbor doubts as to whether this is something that you ought to check out, please just listen to the masterfully crafted song entitled "Steamer". That will convince you! Support these irrational charlatans and buy the album.