Oh my, changes, changes...that certainly is a theme here! First of all, changes in my professional life caused the review of this album (as well as some 50 others) to be somewhat delayed, as those changes caused me to attract writers' block. You see, before those changes, I was allowed to be creatively busy while at work (I mean, why not eh?, after all I'm only a guard, with quite some resting time on my hands in between rounds), and this pushed me to fill quite a bit of my "free" time (in essence, most of it), into the "business" of reviewing albums as well (of course, part of the free time was also spent on research, done at the job place "after hours" – a freebee offered us guards by the company of the buildings I have to guard). However, in the Summer of last we were taken over by a new guarding company, and they implemented their "rules of conduct" onto us, which quite simply meant that all old privileges were taken from us, including the possibility to work on our own laptop during work hours. A very silly thing to do, really, because where before I was sharp throughout my work hours, I am now so bored out of my skull during work, and in fact take that feeling with me when I go home. But...enough of that! Have to start talking music here, and Mechanical Organic's new offering is just the right thing to get me out of my writers' block, if anything!
Changes...as mentioned earlier...are a central theme nevertheless, because they also came above for M.O., originally a studio project started in 2004 by lead & backing singer/ keyboard & bass player/ samples provider Eddie Katz, and guitarist Connie D. They spawned their debut full-length Flat Earth Society upon the world in 2006. For the 2008 full-length Disrepair Part One – Permafrost Dreams, Connie D was unable to attend the recording process, and so that eventually became a Katz solo, on which he played bass in a rather distorted way to resemble guitar sounds...and in my own opinion this is still the best M.O. release to date! A first change in the line-up came when Connie D's bass playing colleague from the bands Spasticator and The Beast From 20000 Fathoms (which I understand are still active today?) Evan Harris (also known from Steve Turner Band, and his past contributions to the legendary Aussie acts Taramis and Black Majesty and some more acts, including Amethyst, Engel Rivers Hardbite, Luthor, Memnoir and, last but not least, Vauxdvihl – keep that last one in mind for what's still to come, okay?!) came to join the fold for M.O.'s 3rd release, the one-tracked Disrepair Part Two – The Pleasure Fled, again self-issued by the band in September 2009, but with some help from a small Australian label. In itself, the EP was another change of pace for the band, as a decision was reached to focus on creating singular long tracks, rather than on full-length albums. Disrepair Part Three – Genesis Of A Germ followed in 2010 (review posted 24/05), and continued in the tradition of alternating passages of spoken word (taken from an internet show hosted by one Darryl Bradford Smith) with music atop, with actual songs. As per usual, the nice multi-layered vocals were occasionally infused with beautiful samples, some of which with intriguing ethnic backgrounds. After that, a long silence from the M.O. camp, and no announcements on the band's website as to what might be goin' on (I know, because I checked a couple of times earlier in the year)! I was actually beginning to fear that this wonderful musical project which I've enjoyed so much from its beginning days, might've been terminated...but then, all of a sudden in early November of last, I get a mail from Eddie, telling me that a new album is on its way by mail from Australia!
Changes...those were apparently at the back of M.O.'s “delay” in getting a new album out! That, and the strong will of the band's members to make the new album a real whopper! So...what changes, you may wonder? Well, for starters, Eddie has now delegated the function of vocalist to one David Bellion, veteran of the Melbourne Prog Metal scene (with 20 years under his belt, he's entitled to that “veteran” label, wouldn't you agree?) known from Fracture (aha...read my review of that band's debut album, posted 17/10/2010), Neue Regel (who released the 9-track demo album In A Word in 2002, to which they added 3 songs to have it released by NuParadigm in 2004) and...Vauxdvhil (remember from above? This band self-released the To Dimension Logic full-length in 1994, and followed that up with the 3-track Demo '96 and the EP's Vog (5 tracks) and Siberian Church Recordings (4 tracks) in 1998 and 2001 – according to the info I found on short visits of the Internet both latter bands would still be active). Another change, is the permanent fixture of one Andrew Hurst (known from having played with Melbourne based acts Wombdream and Sculpting Reality) as the band's drummer, this completing a full-fledged live line-up!
Changes... Oh well yeah, there's more! You see, Bellion being an accomplished lyrics writer and composer as well as singer (and darn man, does he ever resemble the likes of such first-class vocalist as Wade Black and Midnight!), he actually helped out Eddie in both areas quite considerably (to the point of the latter thinking the first for his amazing contributions in his part of the thanks-lists). As a result, there's far more actual songs on This Global Hive than on any other M.O. Release! Another change is a gearing away from the aforementioned D. B. Smith's show samples...for in stead This Global Hove Part One uses shards from a show off (www.) shatterthedarkness.net, hosted by one Russ Dizdar. As mentioned, used in far more modest ways than before. In fact, only three tracks contain samples of that show, including the album opening “Meek As A Dove, Wise As A Serpent”, and the part song “Spiritual Machines” and “The Dark One Knows” (the latter in essence the album's centerpiece at a near 20 minutes' length). Another change, by the way, is a gearing away from the use of those ethnic sound samples.
What is left, is a great Prog Metal act which, now that it is an actual band, is ready and able to take on all and any competition in the field. Of course, the “conspiracy theory” thing is still very much present, this time dealing with the arising of all things evil. Topics deal with satanic ritual abuse, the creation of satanic super-soldiers, the inducement of multiple personality disorders and demonic mind control programs, which are all used to ensure an oncoming chaos. Taken from my info sheet : “Born into this atrocious abuse through satanic bloodlines, the Chosen Ones are committed to the coming New World Order. Their personalities split and programmed, they are demonized and then highly trained to become legions of Working Babylon Babies with deadly hidden abilities. Multiples, as they are commonly known, are programmed with a surplus of sub-personalities including hunters, sleeper assassins, runners, sex slaves, satanic priestesses, counterfeit Christians, PSI warriors, trainers, watchers and many more... Some say there are millions of occult multiples waiting patiently for the awakening command to arise. Triggered, they will unleash the great worldwide demonic revolt.” Hum...I have yet another type to be added to those Dark Legions, namely economist politicians. The type of slimy bastards who, having been elected and accept being paid by their electorate, seek out mandates from the industry world to create a contradiction in terms. For how can anyone who speaks for the Industry still be an unbiased representative of the people that vote for him/ her? Personally, I feel we should start organizing marches upon the International Human Rights Court in Den Hague (Holland), and demand a world-wide legislation against politicians being able to be corrupted by the Industry. Either be a politician, or get into industry, but don't let the two compromise each other!!! Well, better stop the ranting at this point.
I'll just round off this review by pointing out that, with all the changes, M.O. is now definitely another band than it was at the beginning, and although I regret that departure from the sound it started out by, it is now more a “regular” Prog Metal band...a truly góód one...or rather, one of the better ones. Check for music of the band (old and new) on the band's own website, or its MySpace or facebook pages! Ooh...before I forget, there's a guest contribution of Bellion's colleague Tony Markou on rhythm guitar in the track “Changing World”, and besides contributing to the writing process of the album, Bellion also played additonal guitar and keyboards, and took care of mixing and the general production of the material. As per usual, Eddie took care of the album's artwork. A last change, is the fact that the album came in a regular CD jewel casing, in stead of in a DVD package (as was done with all previous releases).