There are certain times in life when you hear a record that not only takes the artist to a whole other level it, resonates in a way that you begin to get swept away by the absolute force of its being. The evolution of Greg Puciato as a songwriter and artist has been quite the journey to hear and see. From The Dillinger Escape Plan to The Black Queen, Killer Be Killed and now as a solo artist as well, what a significant aspect and contribution to be proud of. On this new solo outing, Mirrorcell, not only is this the a natural follow up to his debut Child Soldier: Creator Of God but, it seems that there is a level of inspiration that took this one further.
“In This Hell You Find Yourself” kicks off this album and creates a tension that sets up an uneasiness and then it grabs you and never lets go as “Reality Spiral” starts to sink its claws in. As you listen, you start to hear where this album is coming from and the influence and inspiration that guided these songs. “No More Lives To Give” steps up the heaviness a bit and takes you on an introspective journey lyrically while musically you are hit with hard hitting riffs and melody that sticks with you. “Never Wanted That” (my favorite song on the album as of this writing) is the “Evacuation” of the record. The way this song hits you is astonishing. The bass driven opening again creates a tension that when the chorus of the song comes in, the crushing emotional weight hits you like a ton of bricks. The vulnerability on this song is absolutely powerful. “Lowered” is one of the tracks on the album that again, takes things to another level. The combination of Greg and guest vocalist Reba Meyers from Code Orange is a revelation. These two voices together make magic and when you hear them together, the chills you get from it, I’ll just leave it there. “We” is a track that has a bit of a Black Queen tinge to it but explores more of the new wave elements that are prevalent in their songs. “I, Eclipse” is another of my favorite songs on the album. The intensity of this song and where it’s placed really guides the last part of the album. There is something else about this song I can’t put into words quite yet that, when this song is played live, I’ll be able to explain further. “Rainbows Underground” is one hell of a stellar song and another one that shows the growth of Greg as a songwriter. Finishing off the album with “All Waves To Nothing” leave you not only wanting more but you are then compelled to start the album over. This track has moments that hark back to Greg’s time with The Dillinger Escape Plan but, in a way that feels natural and a bit different.
Throughout this album you are get to hear a whole other side of Greg Puciato. It’s a more cohesive album than his debut and this one seems to hit on a bit of a more personal streak. One of the revelatory aspects of the record is how talented of a guitarist Greg is. His riffs, solos, and playing is a story all on its own. Perhaps too, his time spent with Jerry Cantrell has rubbed off a bit, as there are plenty of ode’s to Alice In Chains, Soundgarden and other 90’s bands that have inspired Greg throughout the years. Another aspect of this album that deserves a ton of credit are the drums and playing by Chris Hornbrook. His ability to create memorable driving hits and rhythms helps propel these songs to that other level I was mentioning. Seriously, when you hear it all put together, you can hear why Chris and Greg as a duo are perfect for one another. Mirrorcell is not only one of those albums that you will be stuck on for a long time, you actually find yourself immersed in the album as a whole, just like it should. This album is a definite candidate for album of the year. Truly, each time I listen to this album I find something else to love about it. Greg put out one hell of an album with Mirrorcell and should be damn proud of it. I can’t wait to hear these songs live along with the ones from Child Soldier. I have a feeling the live show for this is going to be something special all on its own.
Overall Rating: A
Greg Puciato- Mirrorcell: