The Official Machinae Supremacy Forum

The Band => Band Discussion => Topic started by: Jean-Luc on August 22, 2014, 02:57:04 pm

Title: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Jean-Luc on August 22, 2014, 02:57:04 pm
Another step in hstory ...
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Tolkki on August 22, 2014, 08:33:52 pm
Just unboxed mine, I'm kind of starting to regret not getting a shirt or anything cool from the WTF (although I wasn't even able to get them).
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: lucmat on August 23, 2014, 11:42:22 pm
Ohh another Thread. Some users debate the new disk still in the "Where's the hype? :D" Thread (me too) (http://forum.machinaesupremacy.com/index.php/topic,7652.msg256162.html#msg256162). The forum isn't so alive like in former times. There were very much more controversy for earlier albums (41 Pages at the Rise of a Digital Nation thread against 7 Pages for the new one, for example. And the album is still out  ??? ). However is there a chance that robert post another Play-by-Play? It was very interesting for the last albums imo.

A View from the End of the World play-by-play (http://forum.machinaesupremacy.com/index.php/topic,7014.msg243339.html#msg243339)
Rise of a Digital Nation play-by-play (http://forum.machinaesupremacy.com/index.php/topic,7569.msg254539.html#msg254539)
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Hadou on August 25, 2014, 01:46:36 am
There were very much more controversy for earlier albums (41 Pages at the Rise of a Digital Nation thread against 7 Pages for the new one, for example. And the album is still out  ??? ). However is there a chance that robert post another Play-by-Play? It was very interesting for the last albums imo.

There was a lot of controversy because RoaDN sounded so different from what we'd come to expect from MaSu. It was far from a bad album, but I think it was a completely different record than many of the usual forum-goers expected and thus generated a ton of discussion.

Frankly, Phantom Shadow is fast becoming my favourite album from MaSu. It's so layered and there's so many throwbacks to previous work that it's like a big warm MaSu hug. It seems that the general opinion on the forums is in agreement, hence the lack of discussion. Despite that, the album *technically* isn't out yet, so many when it does officially drop we'll see some more talk.

As for a play-by-play - it would be interesting, I agree, but I believe that most of the fun around that was that it was posted way before we could actually listen to the album to let the drooling commence. If one were to be posted right now, even those without their CDs in the mail could stream or torrent it without too much trouble.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Caranfin on August 25, 2014, 02:39:45 am
Also the forums were even less dead back when RoaDN was released.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Hadou on August 25, 2014, 02:42:38 am
Also the forums were even less dead back when RoaDN was released.

True dat.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: robert on August 25, 2014, 08:38:09 am
\m/
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: M3MB3R on August 25, 2014, 01:22:10 pm
There are 3 reasons why the forum is dead:
1. It's fucking impossible to retrieve a password, I lost mine, but i gave up, it won't send it, I reregistered.
2. It's fucking impossible to register. The chaptha is too hard and you have to search for the 2 gigs, who the hell has the pation to do that? Like you have some classified information about IS or Putin.
3. It's fucking impossible to post. Chaptha and gigs again.

I think this album has the same problems as Rise of a Digital Nation, the first 3-4 tracks are awesome (rare, but at MaSu the first track is the best mostly), but it gets blanker at the end. Now we even have resembles to older songs that never happened to MaSu before (The Second One is like Indiscriminate Murder Is Counter-productive). The SID chips are better than before (many times it sound like a real C64 game), but somehow it's not that smooth with the rock/metal parts, start the track with SID, but it gets full metal later, or starts full metal and it gets a SID part at the end. It like the 1741 (The Battle of Cartagena) by Alestorm, but the it was awesome and fresh idea. "The villain of this Story" is far one of the best songs of MaSu, I like Perfect Dark, Throne of Games is a perfect party song, Beyond Good and Evil is great, The Bigger They Are the Harder They Fall has a lots of retro, but somehow I wanted the feeling of Redeemer where all the songs are perfect.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: MashedByMachines on August 25, 2014, 03:00:15 pm
There are 3 reasons why the forum is dead:
1. It's fucking impossible to retrieve a password, I lost mine, but i gave up, it won't send it, I reregistered.
2. It's fucking impossible to register. The chaptha is too hard and you have to search for the 2 gigs, who the hell has the pation to do that? Like you have some classified information about IS or Putin.
3. It's fucking impossible to post. Chaptha and gigs again.

I think this album has the same problems as Rise of a Digital Nation, the first 3-4 tracks are awesome (rare, but at MaSu the first track is the best mostly), but it gets blanker at the end. Now we even have resembles to older songs that never happened to MaSu before (The Second One is like Indiscriminate Murder Is Counter-productive). The SID chips are better than before (many times it sound like a real C64 game), but somehow it's not that smooth with the rock/metal parts, start the track with SID, but it gets full metal later, or starts full metal and it gets a SID part at the end. It like the 1741 (The Battle of Cartagena) by Alestorm, but the it was awesome and fresh idea. "The villain of this Story" is far one of the best songs of MaSu, I like Perfect Dark, Throne of Games is a perfect party song, Beyond Good and Evil is great, The Bigger They Are the Harder They Fall has a lots of retro, but somehow I wanted the feeling of Redeemer where all the songs are perfect.

Captcha and gigs? I don´t get any of that when I post :)

I agree with you on Rise of a Digital Nation, only a few real winners there, but IMO this album is their best yet with only Throne of Games and Phantom Battle being slighly less awesome and feel a bit more like fillers than the others :)
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: M3MB3R on August 25, 2014, 05:27:16 pm
Captcha and gigs? I don´t get any of that when I post :)
http://s27.postimg.org/455v754tf/1122.png

Quote
I agree with you on Rise of a Digital Nation, only a few real winners there, but IMO this album is their best yet with only Throne of Games and Phantom Battle being slighly less awesome and feel a bit more like fillers than the others :)
I think you got that "it's new, it's exciting" feeling. For composition Redeemer was the best so far, but I prefer the atmosphere of Ivfteotw.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Sekhmet on August 25, 2014, 06:00:20 pm
Had to register for this to get some reflections out. I am frankly surprised to see soo many celebrating this album as the best yet, since I myself do not agree.

By no means is it a bad album, it has plenty of good songs, but I think both A View From the End of the World and Rise of a Digital Nation are better albums. I am also a fan of much of their earlier stuff, but on those (the earlier albums) I find myself more picking and choosing more. As for Phantom Shadow, it sometimes strike me as not having as good a musical flow as A View and Digital Nation.

What surpises me most when reading others opinion of this new album is the praise for the song "Europa". It is the only song I find myself simply skipping when I listen through Phantom Shadow. Now I typically like the variety the calmer more athmospheric songs bring to the MaSu lineup, but this one... I dunno. The swipe sounds (sounds like someone moving fingers over the strings on a guitar as they switch chords) are way to pronounced and cuts through the tune and hurts my ears in the same wein as fingernails on a blackboard. Totally ruins the immersion and the impact of the lyrics. As the song pics up a bit of pace it just turns into something that sounds, to me, pretty mainstream (except for those sharp swipe noises still). Not a fan of that song _at all_.

Yay new album though!

P.S. That capatcha bit is really annoying. Understand it for registering but for posting too?
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: M3MB3R on August 25, 2014, 07:41:07 pm
What surpises me most when reading others opinion of this new album is the praise for the song "Europa".
My girlfriend said it's the best MaSu by far, but she listens to One Direction, so it's not a big praise. :D

The best slow song is Flagcarrier, it cannot be succeded.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Jean-Luc on August 25, 2014, 10:22:45 pm
I would suppose the forum not to be dead ... only sleeping and waiting for resurrection together with IRC, when FB and friends fade away. And finally it teased me to post something, after a decade of just staring.

Anyway, for me it took several rounds to warm with it, but in my experience all great albums took a while.
Now it's getting better each time. My kids can tell a story, they don't hear much else these days. Honestely there is not really something, which I don't like in the complete musical production so far, apart from the synthezied choir in Machine Prime (but that's a minor ne :-P).

So I just enjoy every new piece of Machinae sound ...
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Sekhmet on August 26, 2014, 12:36:45 am
The best slow song is Flagcarrier, it cannot be succeded.

This. Soooo much this.
Though, I suppose I would not say that I can not be succeeded, in fact it would be awesome if it was since that would mean I got to hear an even more awesome song... but yes, so far it holds true for me. So far Flagcarrier has not been succeeded on its slow MaSu song throne.

So I just enjoy every new piece of Machinae sound ...

So basically you say that any sound is enjoyable as long as it comes with a MaSu logo? I can not quite agree with that. Does that not belittle their achievements? I suppose you could mean you the sounds (every single one) they have produced so far just happens to coincide with what you find enjoyable though that would mean that you either have a very broad range of things you find enjoyable, or you have a very specific taste which MaSu just has happened to nail spot on with every song. The second alternative is rather... let us say you must be very fortunate for that to be true (in which case, yay for you!).

But, back to the new album....

Really liking "The Bigger They Are The Harder They Fall". Allowing the first half (or even slightly more?) to be instrumental is really nice. Allows the SID sounds to shine mixed in with the conventional metal instruments. Sets the scene nicely for when the vocals actually get to join in. Makes the vocals seem a bit more special when they are not a given.

"Versus" is another really nice one. The vocals here takes a more central role. I like the rythm of the vocals in the verses and the refrain is strong and memorable and the instruments are strong throughout (3:30 to like 4:30 they are allowed to play along by their selves to great success).

"Perfect Dark" has a wonderful intro and the voice and lyrics are really nice in this one. Different and something that gave me a bit of pause at first, but I've found I really like it. Verses (except the last one that I think is not as good as the first two) and the lead in to the refrain I find are really nice.

Those are the ones that pop out to me after having listened to the album a few times over the day. Not that the others are not excellent (well except Europa that I still can not get myself to like. Have problems even listening through it =/) but these are the ones that currently stick out a bit extra for me.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Tolkki on August 26, 2014, 01:04:45 am
So basically you say that any sound is enjoyable as long as it comes with a MaSu logo? I can not quite agree with that. Does that not belittle their achievements? I suppose you could mean you the sounds (every single one) they have produced so far just happens to coincide with what you find enjoyable though that would mean that you either have a very broad range of things you find enjoyable, or you have a very specific taste which MaSu just has happened to nail spot on with every song. The second alternative is rather... let us say you must be very fortunate for that to be true (in which case, yay for you!).
I'm quite sure (due to feeling the same about this subject) that he meant that if a song has "MaSu logo" on it, as you said, it is pretty much guaranteed to be very high quality music = done with very much thought and skill put into it.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Sekhmet on August 26, 2014, 02:21:39 am
I'm quite sure (due to feeling the same about this subject) that he meant that if a song has "MaSu logo" on it, as you said, it is pretty much guaranteed to be very high quality music = done with very much thought and skill put into it.

Would that not be a fallacy of sorts? Certainly they have aquired skills over time. I suppose one could argue that they started out with "very high skill" and then we end up in trying to quantify what constitutes very high skill... still while I much enjoy many of their earlier works I think it safe to say that there were gaps in their skills then that have since been ammended.

Ah, regardless, I am sure even if one where to consider every single thing they have done to be good then surely there are degrees in "heaven" as well as in "hell". That is to say, I am sure there are pieces that one appreciate even more than others. Discussing around such differences brings understanding to the participants in the discussion as well as any casual observer that may read it. Perhaps a budding musician looking to understand what different people like more or less or perhaps even a band trying to know their fans more.

Effective feedback involves both positives and negatives (or positives and slightly less positives if one happens to be "allergic" to the word negative), no? So please, readers share some more of your thoughts on this album if you please. It would be... educational. More than once I have found new aspects to enjoy (and sometimes to dislike) from such discussions. Learning something new from "It is all equally good" is near impossible.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: endshark on August 26, 2014, 03:42:18 am
Personally this is my fave album by them, I really enjoy it (as well as the throwbacks to previous albums). In a way it kind of feels like a best of of all their sounds from over the years, which I guess is where I can see it being polarizing for some if there are some eras you enjoy less than others.

Still rocking out to The Second One though, it really is my fave off the album.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Sekhmet on August 26, 2014, 09:43:54 am
Still rocking out to The Second One though, it really is my fave off the album.

The throwback to Indiscriminate murder is interesting. Indiscriminate murder is one of my favourite tracks on A View, so unfortunately that throwback makes me immediately compare with that one and then The Second One comes up short. The second one is really nice on its own though; it has kind of the same "happy" note going on and the refrain is really nice I think.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Jean-Luc on August 26, 2014, 11:13:04 pm
Quote
I'm quite sure (due to feeling the same about this subject) that he meant that if a song has "MaSu logo" on it, as you said, it is pretty much guaranteed to be very high quality music = done with very much thought and skill put into it.
That's actually quite, what I meant. I wouldn't just buy the logo, without havng it heard. For me it's just a brilliant combination of things. The music (taste), content (attitude) and SID (grew up with C64 etc.). So for me personally it's kind of true. I can put all songs onto a playlist and listen without skipping a track. Of course this is also mood dependent, it doesn't work always.

I agree, that feedback should be constructive. For me "A View From The End Of The World" is one of the best albums ever released, so every new one has a tough time. So far I had pretty surprising moments, i.e. the intro of The Second One, which I could put into a loop. Also the album as a whole gives me the feeling, that it's possible to develop and improve without exchanging everything. So I couldn't identify any flaws so far, but I'll note, when I find them. :-)
At the moment I consider "The Bigger They Are The Harder They Fall" as the catchiest for my ears.
But maybe it's just too early to have an absolute and rational view. For the throwbacks it would be great to get some insight. I am pretty curious on what the thoughts on these are ...
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Sekhmet on August 27, 2014, 12:15:01 am
But maybe it's just too early to have an absolute and rational view. For the throwbacks it would be great to get some insight. I am pretty curious on what the thoughts on these are ...

Thank you for sharing your view in more detail! ^^

And aye, true enough one tends to need to listen many times and have time to reflect to finally settle on an opinion. I find that first reactions are worthwhile to study as well. Oh, speaking of first reactions and throwbacks I do hope that new listeners will find mentions by others that these are in fact throwbacks and use that as a spring board to dig deeper into the older MaSu songs. Would be a terrible shame if someone where to miss out...
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: vittoleon on August 27, 2014, 12:28:21 am
I love the new album for the story, the feeling (a bit futuristic, heroic, dark world ish). It was a bit gone in the last 2 albums but its back except in a few tracks, like Throne of games, it feels a bit too much 'we're an army of gamers hurrhurr' but thats the price for having a huge gamer audience i gues.

Also for soo many people the first thing they discuss is the sid. For me its a tiny gimmick. I wouldnt mind one bit if it was completly dropped. The lyrics, storytelling, instrumentals (they are soo good) etc make MASU, not the sid.


Favorite songs: Beyond good and evil (Great chorus) and the villain of this story, redemtion was never really my thing (Nerdchills), Renegades (Nemesis throwback <3) and Versus for the amazing chorus
Least favorite: Throne of games, Hubnester rising (just dont rlly feel that one)..
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Sekhmet on August 27, 2014, 04:08:28 pm
I love the new album for the story, the feeling (a bit futuristic, heroic, dark world ish). It was a bit gone in the last 2 albums but its back except in a few tracks, like Throne of games, it feels a bit too much 'we're an army of gamers hurrhurr' but thats the price for having a huge gamer audience i gues.

Hmmn, I am not sure I read it right or not, so I better ask. Are you saying you think RoaDN and A View is a bit too much "army of gamers hurrhurr" and that Throne of games is like that? Or do you more saying that RoaDN and A View is not as "bit futuristic, heroic, dark world-ish" and the bit about "army of gamers hurrhurr" are more about Throne of Games specifically?

Personally think you can find quite a bit of futurism, heroism and dark worlds in both RoaDN and A View, though I will agree that despite some pretty darkish themed songs (Transgenic for instance) RoaDN is more energetic/fight song like rather than omnious.

Also for soo many people the first thing they discuss is the sid. For me its a tiny gimmick. I wouldnt mind one bit if it was completly dropped. The lyrics, storytelling, instrumentals (they are soo good) etc make MASU, not the sid.

Interesting! For me MaSu would not be so appealing to me without the SID-sounds. But discussing the SID alone does not make much sense to me, since what I like is the merge between those sounds and the other sounds generated by more conventional metal means. I am sure I would find MaSu a good band without the SID, but I would certainly not find them as exceptional as I do with the SID as part of their music.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: vittoleon on August 27, 2014, 05:45:38 pm
The army of gamers comment is more specific to songs like Throne of games, Crouching camper hidden sniper etc. After checking the albums again my problem lies more with the second part of the A view from the end of the world album, using more modern day interwebz theme's instead of the theme's that focus more on telling a story. Songs like 99 and Hero for example just allow you to dream away and imagine a heroic tale while listening to it. Songs like indiscriminate murder is counter productive dont really allow for that which is a bit of a downside (However purely musical they are good songs).
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Hadou on August 27, 2014, 07:37:45 pm
"The villain of this Story" is far one of the best songs of MaSu, I like Perfect Dark, Throne of Games is a perfect party song, Beyond Good and Evil is great, The Bigger They Are the Harder They Fall has a lots of retro, but somehow I wanted the feeling of Redeemer where all the songs are perfect.

only Throne of Games and Phantom Battle being slighly less awesome and feel a bit more like fillers than the others :)

Gotta agree with Mashed here, Throne of Games is the only song I am ever tempted to skip in PS. It's not that it's a bad song per se, it just doesn't seem to flow as much as everything else on the album. It reminds me of the "Fallout Style" version of RoaDN that vastly improved the flow of the album.

Now we even have resembles to older songs that never happened to MaSu before (The Second One is like Indiscriminate Murder Is Counter-productive).

This does bug me a little.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Chronologix on August 27, 2014, 10:51:17 pm
Throne of Games and the 45sec-2min second interludes are the only skip worthies for me, it sounds bad, but considering that they don't occupy full feature track spots (hence the 16 tracks total), it isn't a big deal.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: MashedByMachines on August 27, 2014, 11:40:05 pm

Now we even have resembles to older songs that never happened to MaSu before (The Second One is like Indiscriminate Murder Is Counter-productive).

This does bug me a little.

It is a sequel though :)
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Cerapter on August 29, 2014, 12:29:27 am
I like the album very much.

It gives me the feeling of higher resolution compared to previous albums. My senses might be fooling me, but I get the impression that there is more musical detail, and more musical skill, in this one that in previous albums. The composition, styles, Rob's vocals, and the guitars. It makes for very good replay value!

It's not more of the same as before. It breaks with all previous albums, and I like that. I like hearing new sounds from the band, instead of repetitions of the great themes perfected in Redeemer, or more political songs. Paradoxically, then, Phantom Shadow is also wrapped around the same storyline that Rob has been sneaking into songs forever, and the album truly is a key that makes me second guess so many of their earlier songs. It tickles my imagination and lets me paint a whole story. And it is deliciously full of SID and epic, like some truly ancient tracks like Bouff and the Sidologies. It is core MaSu values with a serious upgrade.

Throne of Games – finally made me start thinking of the balance of values in MaSu's songs on internet, gaming and the future. Either the song is actually sloppy (opening with low-quality Japanese in a bored voice when this has been done so much better before) or it's meant to be ridiculous without actually sounding bad. Gaming is great, but not an excuse to be pathetic.

Europa – the female vocals are beautiful and I'd love to hear more of it. It's one of the songs I find myself listening to on repeat. The fret screeches are unfortunate, sometimes I really notice and sometimes I don't. When you notice it, it does destroy the song and seems a major mistake. Hopefully this can be fixed and re-released.

The Bigger They Are the Harder They Fall – clearly one of my favorites, a flawless SID battle tune. The SID is truly one of the things that really sold me to this album.

Hubnester Rising – the song on this album, even without SID. I love how it erupts at 4:05, and the epic guitar sounds. There is strength throughout the piece, but what I love the most is the very rising of that strength, the phoenix-esque becoming of something greater. Is he turning into a motherfreaking metal dragon space station?! I would know better, I suppose, if I had been digging around for details on the graphical novel, but now I start to fear my own imaginings would be impinged, ha!

I wish I knew some more details, like some backstory on the characters and who are featuring/singing in each of the songs. I do feel that the lyrics have suffered somewhat from being so related to the over-arcing story, but I actually don't mind this so much. The album is very much a whole, a "larger than this track", less so a set of shiny pieces to be enjoyed in isolation. When I listen to one, it points to the others in the set and I want that immersion.

Definitely buying the CD now.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Chronologix on August 30, 2014, 06:13:00 am
Finally got my album in ze mail today.

But there still doesn't seem to be any places that I can link to people to get them interested in the music in Canada. Spotify, Pandora, etc. are all unavailable in Canada :/
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Crazywater on August 30, 2014, 01:00:51 pm
I agree with everyone on this thread 50% and disagree the other 50%.

Edit: Except this post

\m/
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Schattenjaeger on September 05, 2014, 06:27:18 am
Finally took a stroll through the album (listening to it again right now, in fact) and while I'm sure the first half of the album will grow on me, given time, I overwhelmingly favor the latter half - pretty much everything from "Beyond Good and Evil" onward, with "Versus" being my absolute favorite of the album, though BGAE, TSO, and TBTATHTF are all very awesome as well (Hubnester Rising is also cool, but it's at the bottom of my top 5 list for this album). I also have the chorus of "The Villain of the Story" stuck in my head.

I find it amusing that the start of "The Second One" sounds like something I might hear while playing Maple Story. I also kind of want to hear "Indiscriminate Murder is Counter-Productive" remixed in the more mature style of this song.

Also, can someone remind me which song is directly referenced in the end of "Renegades"? There are just too many songs to remember where those lyrics came from.
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Jean-Luc on September 05, 2014, 09:11:52 am
You mean "Nemesis" or did I miss something? Or the "oooohoooo" thing? :-P
Title: Re: Phantom Shadow
Post by: Ageless on December 17, 2014, 10:14:34 am
I do like Renegade, with its start fading in where Nemesis left off. I also recognized the riff from the start of Nova Prospekt in the middle there (3:48).

Loving The bigger they are the harder they fall. Two and a half minute of epic SID and guitars, a bit of lyrics and a minute of more SID and guitars. I wouldn't mind getting the 45 minute version of that. :)

Do have a small complaint about the price though: going from €18,- to €24,99 just because it includes shipping and a damn Paypal fee, although I suppose it could be worse.