To some people, pain is stand-still traffic on a 100 degree day with a broken air conditioner. Pain is getting a solid rectangle tattooed on either side of your rib cage. Pain is childbirth without an epidural. Pain is eternal torment in Hell. I, however, have discovered the true meaning of the word. Pain is having to listen to Power Of The Damn Mixxxer, the latest album from Prong. In fact, after I’m finished writing this review, I’m going to personally write Satan and let him know that he can fire the minotaur that punishes those within the circle of violence. He could get the job done by simply playing this album to the violent and letting them have at each other.
There are a few things that should be taken into consideration before I write further. For one, Prong hasn’t put out anything too amazing in quite some time. There’s some argument as to where it all started to go wrong, but most will agree that the band has been in a downward spiral for a while now. With that said, you then have to realize that this is a remix album, which is the worst of the worst for any band. Just look at Fear Factory. They put out Remanufacture, and in all honesty, which is their worst album to date, and it was released at a point in time when they were undeniably kicking ass. The advantage Fear Factory had was that the source material, Demanufacture, is one of the nastiest albums in existence. Power Of The Damn Mixxer is based off of 2007’s Power Of The Damager, which is the Fear Factory equivalent of Digimortal. This one was destined to fail before the damn mixxxer was ever powered on.
It almost hurts me to talk down so much about the mighty Prong, as they were definitely a nasty band at one point in time. I’m currently listening to 1990’s Beg To Differ just to ensure that I can have a fond memory of Prong before I retire them to the back of my mind again. In fact, fuck this. I’m going to write the rest of this review about Beg To Differ.
Released during what was pretty much the great depression of mainstream metal, the nineties, Beg To Differ was a ground-breaking record. It had the meat that 80’s thrash had peddled to everyone and their brother, but it was coupled with the alternative sound that would become so prevalent throughout the decade. In fact, both Jonathan Davis of Korn and Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails have gone on record as saying they consider Prong an influence. Now, I wouldn’t go so far as to say that Prong invented nu metal, but they definitely made their contribution. It’s not a hard idea to wrap your head around if you listen to songs such as “Your Fear”, “Take It In Hand”, or the instrumental “Intermenstrual, D.S.B.”. “For Dear Life” was an amazing opening track, as it showcased some of the grooviest thrash riffs on the market, and the title track was both written and executed perfectly. Just try not to bob your head when that song gets started.
The drumming on Beg To Differ was amazing in the fact that it wasn’t played at Dave Lombardo or Charlie Benante speeds, but still managed to sound like it could beat you down and leave you for dead, and a slow death by drumming was not a common trademark for a thrash band. “Lost And Found” is a prime example of the slow yet technical chops Ted Parsons brought to the band. Also, say what you want about Tommy Victor’s voice, the guy could still write great lyrics and even better riffs.
All I can really do is leave you with is this bit of advice: if you have a hankering to purchase a Prong record this pay period, make sure that it’s Beg To Differ. Under no circumstances should Power Of The Damn Mixxxer receive any sales. Metal, music, and mankind in general will be much better off this way, and hopefully the potential and much-deserved failure of this record will be enough to finally convince Tommy Victor to just let Prong die once and for all.
01. Worst Of It (Worst Of The Worst Mix)
02. Can’t Stop The Bleeding (Smack! Mix)
03. The Banishment (Wolfzilla & The Angry Moon Mix)
04. Power Of The Damager (Fabrication Mix)
05. 3rd Option (Naked In The Cadillac Mix)
06. Pure Ether (Big Riddim Mix)
07. Messages Inside Of Me (Chicxulub Impactor Mix)
08. No Justice (Crackmix)
09. Looking For Them (Contagious Mix)
10. Spirit Guide (Reality’s Edge Mix)
11. Changing Ending Troubling Times (Abandoned Structures Mix)
12. The Banishment (Bitter Harvest Mix)
13. Bad Fall (Smile On Your Face Mix)