Meshuggah - Rare Trax


Not blessed, or merciful
Apr 11, 2001
Sarf Lundin, Innit
Meshuggah - Rare Trax
Nuclear Blast - 2001
By Philip Whitehouse

Meshuggah, according to the Nuclear Blast bio I got with this album, means 'crazy'. After listening to and watching these guys in action, I can belive it. Meshuggah are possibly the most dangerously insane people in metal at the moment. Luckily, their music hasn't suffered from this mental instability, as this compilation of 10 rare songs and a couple of videos ably demonstrates.
Meshuggah's style is difficult to describe without hand gestures and gurning - it's like taking grindcore, slowing it down a little, introducing tempo changes, melody and solos and adding a twist of Swedish lunacy. Basically, it's fast, it's heavy, but it has melody and a beat as well.

The first track on this compilation, 'War' was originally recorded for guitarist Fredrik Thordendal's 30th birthday, while the last, 'The Ayahuasca Experience' was recorded while under 'some kind of influence' according to the band. It sounds like a free-form jam session committed to record, and no-one is entirely sure when it was recorded.

Other highlights include the three tracks which make up Meshuggah's extremely rare and highly coveted Psykisk Testbild EP. As well as being good tracks in their own right, they also hold the power to incite people to violence via their inclusion on this album - because the 1,000 lucky people who actually own the EP now feel like idiots because everyone else has it too!

The video section of the CD contains some gems, also. Specifically, the video for 'New Millenium Cyanide Christ', which consists of five men playing air guitar, air drums, air bass and screaming vocals into a pen - in the back of an RV. Also, the 'Tour and Studio Cips' video is a edited together mess of 'completely irrellevant material' shot over a two-year period by the band.

If you like your metal heavy, speedy, melodic and mad, then I would definitely rush out and buy this album.

You can read the original review here . Post your comments below!
The new Meshuggah cd looks pretty cool.,.,.,im probably gonna go get Chaosphere before i get rare trax..,.,.i love their weird ass solo's.,.,.,.
I still have to get around to buying this rare tracks cd, can anyone tell me if it's in the same vain as like "Destroy,Erase,Improve" or were Meshuggah once sane? I've actually heard some people say there style was by accident cos they can't write music. I pity the fools in true Mr T. style.
Meshuggah are gods.

Their style is Death metal with lots of thrashy influences, which make them fast and heavy in the same time, gives them an awesome industrial sound and with great and powerful lyrics. And more than that, they can make changes in their music that make you only enjoy it more. For instance, in Destroy, Erase, Improve - my favorite, there's grea music, lots of fast stuff and good ol' heavy Meshgugga, as you say.

But in Chaosphere, you hear much slower music, but heavier, with that strong industrial sound and long long lines of lyrics with the screaming voice that makes you wanna go and yell along with your cd player.

RARE TRAX, is a collection of some of their rare records, including the three tracks from their debut album that was published in only 1000 copies and on vinyl only. Hell, the band states themselves on the cover that "those who bought our debut are real suckers". In addition, you'll find in it the coolest tracks, "War" that was recorded for Thordendal's 30th birthday ("yes, he's old") with the drum program that was made by Skog and Fredrik Thordendal and sounds totally GODLIKE.

Other than that, there's "Don't Speak" - IMO the best song in the collection with nice (says me) guitar rythme and great riffs.

And what you have all expacted: The vids. You all know the vids from the other reviews, but I'll make some notes:

Elastic is a cool song, but that performance was recorded by only ONE cam - that means that the whole video is boring.

The Meshuggah Movie - There's nothing like seeing the guys banging their heads while hearing a swedish children song :D

New Millenium... - Best song, performed with nothing. They just make themselves playing and the resault is undoubtful..

Some early releases of RARE TRAX by nuclear blast were found to be very buggy and without the Videos burnt into them. I had this problem myself so I sent my copy back to NB and got a new one.
War is so awesome. I like how they left the laughing in too that part is funny. Of course, right after they blast you into this amazing 3/4 section