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Melancholyman

Infected Mushroom - Legend Of The Black Shawarma

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Infected Mushroom - Legend Of The Black Shawarma

Released:
8th of September 2009

Label:
Perfecto Records
Hom-Mega Productions
Alternative Distribution Alliance



Tracklisting:
1. "Poquito Mas" (Spanish for "A Little Bit More") – 3:39
2. "Sa'eed" (سعيد, Arabic for "Happy") – 7:03
3. "End of the Road" ("Sof HaDerech", Hebrew for "End of the Road") – 6:47
4. "Smashing the Opponent" (Vocals: Jonathan Davis) – 4:10
5. "Can't Stop" – 7:23
6. "Herbert the Pervert" – 7:17
7. "Killing Time" (Vocals: Perry Farrell) – 3:04
8. "Project 100" – 9:38
9. "Franks" – 8:05
10. "Slowly" – 9:00
11. "The Legend of the Black Shawarma" – 7:11
12. "Riders on the Storm (Infected Mushroom Rmx)" – 4:29



Ever since Bp.Empire was released, Infected Mushroom has been subject to a fierce discussion whether they are sell out's or are reinventers of the genre. There is a sort of love or hate relationship to them, which is both their curse and benefit. One thing is for sure, and that is, that every album I.M release is a big evolution, good or bad, from the previous one.
Even the skeptics did agree that Converting Vegetarians could be regarded as psytrance, and downtempo, but it was with this album the border between psy and mainstream really began to erode. And with the release of I'm The Supervisor the last skeptics still accepting I.M also jumped off the train. Then there were the people just taking Erez and Duvdev's music for what it was, music, or to express it in a more poetic way, art. I am on of them and has greatly enjoyed the releases following after C.V, but it is clear that the direction of those albums was towards a more mainstream appealing sound. If this was a conscious choice or just natural evolution is hard to say, but most probably it's a mix of both.

I.M is obviously trying to reach out to a new audience, but they are still faithful to their older fans. More so on Legend Of The Black Shawarma than on Vicious Delicious. The tracks can be divided into two categories, psyrock/psypop and psytrance where tracks: 1,2,3,4,5,7 and 11 fits into the first one. The tracks 6,8,9 and 10 are tracks with no lyrics, fitting into the second one.

I feel as it is important to say that the lyrics are not used in an ordinary way. They are more as a compliment integrated in the tracks, often synthesized, modified and twisted à la Infected recipe. Which is very prominent in Legend Of The Black Shawarma(T11). This is as I see it a great way for introducing listeners to pure electronica. Gently fading the border between voice and computer generated sounds.
The album has a very smart planning where you are presented with more rock/psy oriented tracks in the beginning. This is especially obvious with Smashing The Opponent(T4), where known singer from Korn, Jonathan Davis makes his guest appearance. The track contains alot of the typical Korn atmosphere, perfectly mixed with I.M's magnificent production skills and unique sound. You are then, as a figure of speaking gently (since there is nothing gentle about most tracks) introduced to the non lyric, pure psytrance tracks.

The old and reliable I.M formula is very present on this album. Change of tempo, twisted sounds, epic sensations, darker mystical excursions,and blissful uplifting panoramas are almost exclusively present on all the psy-oriented tracks. Never at any part does it ever get tedious or repetitive, this is and has always been Infected Mushrooms main strength. Always evolving, ever changing.
There are moments, in the psytrance tracks, where Erez start working his magic, or Duvdev is performing a beautiful guitar piece, when all former doubt regarding this release is washed away, and I remember why I fell in love with I.M in the first place. The contrast between different parts of a track can be immense, and it's a universal truth that contrasts is what life is all about. The joy, playfulness, seriousness, melancholy, bliss, wizardry, geniosity and everything in between is still present from albums like Classical Mushroom and B.P.Empire, you just have to look for it. And elements from all previous albums are here to be found, for the attentive listener. Often I find myself being thrown back in time to former installments during my listening sessions. A touch of nostalgia is never wrong!

My personal favorite is without doubt Slowly(T10). A flawlessly executed, pure psychedelic track. It has all the ingredients required, so even the most hard headed I.M skeptic can't have any argument against it whatsoever. If so, then it narrows down to just a simple matter of personal taste. I don't feel as it is a coincidence that Slowly has the penultimate position. It might be a hint, Erez and Duvdev are clearly showing they still got the vestige to make pure psychedelica. They just don't want to, or life put them in another direction. And maybe, just maybe, had people been a little bit more humble regarding criticism on I.M's endeavors following B.P.Empire. There might have been a few more non-lyric tracks on the album, in the same league as this particular one.

Recommendation:

In regards of what I think the album is trying to accomplish, converting a new generation of listeners to a more psy/electronic sound, showing of genius production skills, making more money for the duo, and satisfying older fans with a few tracks, it's perfect with a capital P.

This is Infected Mushroom anno 2009, love it or hate it. Or as Erez and Duvdev might have put it, either you are with us, or against us.

review by: Melancholyman


Listen to samples and buy the album HERE

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FTP    0

More ideas than VD, not that many dull tracks as on Supervisor and not boring as CV A-side, lacking on BP Empire, it's not DiscoMushroom, not even close to Return of the Shadows and singing is not annoying - to surprise and overall it is  a buy, maybe.

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Redington    4

As far as quality of the sound goes, it's probably they're best album yet. But the content is a different story. It has some elements from the previous album flowing in it, which I don't particularly like but whatever. However, they do seem to branch out more than they have done so last time by getting Jonathan Davis in there and Perry Farrell.

 

 

I have to listen to it again (and not fall asleep through half it it like the first time) to shape my opinion of it more.

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The lyric tracks get tiresome after a while. But tracks 6,8,9,10 and 11 I think are just awesome. And they still hold, and I'm sure they will stand the test of time. One thing that I've noticed is that if you listen to this, on mediocre headphones, earphones or stereo set. They tracks can sound really crappy.

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Insejn    63

While I still think the singing and the guitar work is kinda bad, it's less obnoxious and stupid than on their previous albums. Or am I getting used to it? And as usual with IM there are parts in their tracks which is absolutely awesome. They even succeed to make the guitar sound more of a compliment to the other sounds than the driving force in the track, which is pretty nice (some parts in Saeed and Herbert The Pervert). The tracks with Jonathan Davis and Perry Farell are pure shit and just terrible. Poquito Mas has a massive drum work (Erez wizardry?) and should be listened to on fat speakers :). This is probably my favourite track on the album. Project 100 and Slowly are other good tracks. The rest is forgettable except for some good parts here and there. Sound production is flawless but I guess you already knew that.

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djShoom    1

great cd cover, but id rather bash my head against a wall that listen to this. i would boo a dj if he dropped these god awful tracks

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Banan    0

hmm .. Infected Mushroom represents its very own music genre since CV / Im the Supervisor...

I didnt enjoy VD, just few tracks were worth listening but I really enjoyed #04-Heavyweight. So powerfull metal-psy(?) track with a lot of energy.

Legend Of the Black Shawarma is similar to VD and Im the supervisor. Its better though, and there is also track like Heavywight and its called "Project 100" #08 which is really really good .... Try to listen to Heavyweight and Project 100 on quality hi-fi with bunch of metalheads... they will go f.ing crazy....

tracks #9 and #10 are also my favorites.

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p(sy)ayam    2

This is much better than what I expected, and much much better than the previous two albums. That doesn't mean it's good though! Some of the tracks are really bad IMO and get annoying really quick. Vocals are really bad but much to my surprise not as bad as guitar riffs. The annoying guitar sounds really cheap and amateurish.

 

 

...The tracks can be divided into two categories, psyrock/psypop and psytrance where tracks: 1,2,3,4,5,7 and 11 fits into the first one. The tracks 6,8,9 and 10 are tracks with no lyrics, fitting into the second one.

@Melancholyman: good review and i agree to some extend BUT, you probably don't know what psyrock is if you are labeling this as psyrock. This has NOTHING to do with psyrock, neither Perry Farrell's Korn, absolutely NOTHING. if you want to hear a blend of psyrock and electronica i suggest you check what Simon Posford has done with Alan Parsons and David Gimour on guitar.

http-~~-//www.youtube.com/watch?v=kEVUX8FI7zs

 

Just compare the awful guitar of IM and this masterpiece. This is influenced by psyrock not IM.

just my 2 cents

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This is much better than what I expected, and much much better than the previous two albums. That doesn't mean it's good though! Some of the tracks are really bad IMO and get annoying really quick. Vocals are really bad but much to my surprise not as bad as guitar riffs. The annoying guitar sounds really cheap and amateurish.

 

 

 

 

@Melancholyman: good review and i agree to some extend BUT, you probably don't know what psyrock is if you are labeling this as psyrock. This has NOTHING to do with psyrock, neither Perry Farrell's Korn, absolutely NOTHING. if you want to hear a blend of psyrock and electronica i suggest you check what Simon Posford has done with Alan Parsons and David Gimour on guitar.

http-~~-//www.youtube.com/watch?v=kEVUX8FI7zs

 

Just compare the awful guitar of IM and this masterpiece. This is influenced by psyrock not IM.

just my 2 cents

 

You are right, I didn't know what to label it as so I just took psyrock. My bad....but I hope it will not cause too much of a confusion. And this clip was indeed a masterpiece :)

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saturnalia    0

I'll keep this short because this album isn't worth the time.

 

1. I'm willing to admit that in some ways, this album is not quite as bad as some of their worst, ie Vicious Delicious/IM the Supervisor. The heavy metal guitars and the singing are beyond shit but some of the musical content is not horrible. It's such a shame to listen to these guys; they clearly have production skills and they clearly had potential at one point but I just don't understand how anybody could make this music and not notice that it's awful. "I'm gonna push you, until you gonna get it." These lyrics are a joke, they dont' mean anything, they're obnoxious, Duvdev's voice is terrible, and to top it all off, that isn't even how you would say what he's trying to say. If you can't speak english or don't care to take the time to have somebody edit your lyrics so that they make sense, sing in Hebrew. Many of the tracks on this album, as on their past few, are completely ruined by vocals like this.

 

2. Much of this album, to me (and i've seen this comment elsewhere) sounds very reminiscent of Depeche Mode. I can respect an artist exploring new territory and that's the typical argument used in defense of the crap they've been producing over the last couple of albums. I think it's pretty clear these guys have strayed far enough that they no longer even belong in the psytrance genre, but I dont' see how mimicking 80's and 90's synth-pop is "exploring a new sound."

 

3. This is supposed to be a concept album. About food that they like to eat. Frank's is a restaurant they like, Poquito Mas is a mexican taco place they like, Sa'eed is an Israeli brand of hummus. A concept album!?? About food you like to eat?? I think they would at least like to still try to pretend that they belong in the psytrance genre. They want to do a concept album and the most interesting/psychedelic concept they can come up with is restaurants they like?! I think their next concept album should be what brand of toothpaste they prefer and what their favorite laundry detergent is.

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psytones    103

[ And maybe, just maybe, had people been a little bit more humble regarding criticism on I.M's endeavors following B.P.Empire. There might have been a few more non-lyric tracks on the album, in the same league as this particular one.

 

Good fun review, man. I was expecting more words about the psychology surrounding the fact that IM are door-openers, but nice work either way :)

 

I totally agree on the quoted part above. I was thinking about this, that when they released CV (Trance Side), it got such a bashing that the IM guys must have thought something in the line of; 'know what, fuck them and their superior judgmental ego, we're gonna make something utterly special and convert the world into weird electronic music and I don't care if the shanti hippie fuckers like it or not!!' .. And then Duvdev started to crash and sing about it. Or, that was already happening on Deeply Disturbed. (love you Duvdev, your human)

 

I know IM has always been in the center of love and bash, like when CM was released, it was trashed as being mainstream and what-not. Personally I was one of those who found love in psytrance through IM's tracks, but unfortunally, and it shames to say, I was also one of those who hated CD-Trance Side and thought it was crap. Now, years later I have so much respect for the tracks on Trance Side. Almost all of them are loved masterpieces, really delightful psychedelic trance with a charming sound. Point is, I think maybe your spot-on.

 

Haven't heard this album yet, but I got all of their previous albums, so this one will be bought as well, for sure!

 

Now I'm gonna play the terrible but yet very enjoyable track with KoRn's vocalist, Jonathan Davis.

 

http-~~-//www.youtube.com/watch?v=IAwIpOnzN8M&feature=fvst

 

IM-4-Evargh

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I think their next concept album should be what brand of toothpaste they prefer and what their favorite laundry detergent is.

 

hahaha

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THEE guitar ruins everything! cause other then that, its the best thing ive heard from infected mushroom since converting vegeterians, a lot more psychadelic, twisted sounds, but the fuckin guitar, some cheesy quasi-euro leads and the voice from the bald guy is really hard to digest

 

BUT

 

best thing ive heard from them since converting vegetarians... its a start

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5meohd    0

fuck... I wonder how much money they made off it?? a friend of mine drove like 11 hours to see them and said the opening dj was so bad, I was better.. and I suck really bad..

 

 

you would think any sane, respectable, SUCCESSFUL musician would have the common decency to provide there fans with good memorable shows.. or maybe they were banking on the fact that no one would care about the first act.....

 

 

still to me it just proves what a couple of fucks they are.. I mean seriously its like they evolve like the rest of us.. they are getting old right?? then why does the music seem to be going backwards as far as the conceptual side goes.. like they are angry 10th graders again!! wtf?? I mean if they are going to expand to other genres and what not shouldn't they be moving forwards to more intelligent types of music and working with other artists that are talented??

 

lool at bluetech for instance........ Evan probably doesnt have a 256th of the amount of money and he goes to work with Steve Hillage one of the most influential psychedelic rock musicians of the 60's and 70's... theyre album isnt some in your face "were gonna turn the world on" shit..... but for those that care to be "turned on" it is BLISS

 

 

true "metalheads" would FUCKING LAUGH at this shit.. go check out necrophagist' myspace..... or nile's myspace... thats metal..

 

 

fuck.. sorry just ranting cause I'm sick of people with power, experience, knowledge, talent turning into rich mindless fucks that just want there power, experience, knowledge, talent, and piggy bank to keep growing and growing and growing... not giving two shits about what they could be doing with all that power, experience, knowledge, talent and piggy bank contents!!!!!!!!

 

 

i read once where someone posted something about the best thing ever coming from IM was the small percentage of kids who convert over and within months learn that there are young inspirational artists creating better sounds.. then abandoning IM all together. I AGREE

 

 

 

but I do plan to give a remix a go.. everyone else should try to.... flipping one of these glamturds into a 160BPM horror fest should be FUN!!!! :ph34r:

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rino    3

Awesome music for listening to when standing in line to buy a shawarma.

 

Or perhaps a spicy kebab?

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saturnalia    0

After listening to this album several more times, I would say that if they stripped all of the lyrical vocals and all of the heavy metal guitars and got rid of one or two of the poppiest tracks, this album wouldn't be bad. Some of the tracks have some processed vocal SOUNDS that are cool but they're always followed very quickly with lyrical vocals that, as noted by pretty much everybody who listens to this, are fucking horrible.

 

I watched the video for "Smashing the Opponent." Did anybody else catch the irony? So . . . apparently the point of the video is that, as producers, they don't get enough respect while DJ's steal all of the limelight. The video starts with them making a quiet entrance into the club, waiting in line to get a drink, not getting recognized by people in the club. Then a douche bag DJ (that bares an extreme resemblance to Aphex Twin in the Windowlicker video, not sure why because Richard D. James is 10x cooler than these guys will ever be, but anyway . . .) comes in, makes a grand entrance and the crowd goes wild. So the DJ is getting all of the credit for playing their music. Umm . . . Infected Mushroom are the highest paid psytrance musicians in the world, and some of the highest paid in the trance scene overall! How are you going to complain about a lack of respect, notoriety, compensation, etc. when you are NUMBER ONE!? On top of that, THEY are the douchebags so if they want to complain about the dj's that play their music being douchebags, they should stop putting out such shitty music and maybe some respectable dj's will play their tracks.

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FTP    0

Duvdev!

 

Your singing in Sa'eed is awwesome. It reminds me the good old Waltari (check So Fine, Big Bang and YEAH! YEAH! DIE! DIE! Death Metal Symphony in Deep C)

 

But I mean this kind of voice colour

 

 

 

 

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pifpafpof    0

fuck... I wonder how much money they made off it??

 

don't know about this album, but i know how much money they made last year as a whole... and let me tell you it's by far worth it.

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Jon Cocco    90

Infected Mushroom - Legend Of The Black Shawarma

2009

 

 

Posted Image

 

 

Tracklist:

 

1. Poquito Mas – 3:39

2. Sa'eed – 7:03

3. End of the Road – 6:47

4. Smashing the Opponent" (Vocals: Jonathan Davis) – 4:10

5. Can't Stop – 7:23

6. Herbert the Pervert – 7:17

7. Killing Time (Vocals: Perry Farrell) – 3:04

8. Project 100 – 9:38

9. Franks – 8:05

10. Slowly – 9:00

11. The Legend of the Black Shawarma - 7:12

12. Riders on the Storm (Infected Mushroom Rmx) - 4:29

 

 

I've been listening to Infected Mushroom since their first three albums and consider all of them excellent. I remember when 2003's Converting Vegetarians introduced singing on the experimental CD; the singing didn't bother me. I generally liked it, and it didn't seem to split fans until the group began singing to their beloved psytrance style via 2004's IM The Supervisor. While few of my friends (crowds in general) seemed to like the loud, opening track on IM the Supervisor, numerous fans were outraged. I was one that didn't like the singing on IM...Supervisor save for Muse Breaks (RMX) with the female voice. But I stayed because I love their psytrance work around the singing. But I couldn't get into the singing, the cheesy lyrics, etc. The group toured for some time, attracting new fans; more people now know of psytrance because of them, though so much know the psy/goa many older fans are familiar with. IM had evolved but not in the way I had wanted them to.

 

2006 saw the release of Vicious Delicious, an album where singing affected roughly half to two-thirds of the album. Gone were the female vocals collaboration (Dagan/Eisen/Duvdevani) that made part of IM the Supervisor pleasant, yet less dance friendly. On Vicious, Duvdev's lyrical work was generally melancholy, and at other times uninspired (Artillery) where they attempted rap rock. The group didn't seem to know what direction they were going in. Fortunately, the psytrance tracks were solid, a handful were lyric-free and well received. Heavyweight, few others, and Duvdev got to sing. But singing style was generally sentimental, downer tracks that lacked IM's cutting edge psychedelic sound to accompany them. In a sense, IM had compromised their individual voice (not voice literally but focus) because Duvdev was searching to establish a new ground to IM: psytrance with singing. Nonetheless, singing can accompany better music, arrangement, lyrics, and voice; it can be altered, tweaked, collaborated, lessoned, fun, catchy, and not existent to. The group went back to the cutting board and returned in September, 2009 with The Legend of the Black Shawarma[/i]. They've returned more to their roots in the psy sense, lyric wise, and made dramatic changes to their psy rock. The songs aren't as sentimental; singing and vocal work is better written, arranged, produced, and at times collaborated. Furthermore, there's a rough third of the album dedicated to all new psytrance tracks without singing or lyrics. A track per track review ensures...

 

 

1. Poquito Mas is a short introductory track. The foreign melody/work coupled with the chopped up voices is good. A rising melody around 2:00 works too, but the repeating, aggressive "I'm gonna push you.. until you gonna get it.." lyrics grow tired, fast. The last 30 seconds see a more industrial/metal tone to presumably provide strength while compensating for the repetition. Musically the song is pretty good. Lyrics and arrangement are lackluster and do nothing for me. It's the music that works, though it's clear that the group was creating a quick, mainstream friendly entrance. IM has done better. C+

 

2. Sa'eed is much better both musically, and vocal/lyric wise. The song lifts off around 1:36, confirming the climax work that more or less kicked ass in Vicious Delicious. The delivery of the dialogue works here, though the robotic voice around 2:30 is so-so; the song's high octane energy and drive work well around its dynamics. With dialogue, "I feel ashame" I initially prayed that the album wouldn't get too self- mushy, for lack of better words. The lift off at 4:85 is solid and compliments the track. Overall, and I can't believe I'm saying this... but while I don't love the dialogue, I do like the altered voice work, primarily the energy put into it. The song develops nicely and is catchy from beginning to end. Older fans will be split, but I like it. B+

 

3. End of the Road begins with a quick, thumping beat. It's lyric-free for around three minutes until a very short, altered bit arrives. IM has enhanced their voice almost to near robot a la X-Dream but differently. A monster buildup takes place from around 3:16 to 3:40 and right before the climax explosion, the music stops and all we hear is a little laugh. I have to admit that this anti-climax felt like a slap in the face initially, but I later admired the unpredictable shift to a more delectable psy-bubble concoction. There is very little dialogue here and the super altered bits work just fine. Musically, it's good but I'm not blown away. B

 

4. Smashing the Opponent" (Vocals: Jonathan Davis) sees the team up of IM with KORN's lead singer. Hmmm... Interesting. This should make more people aware of the group, in the US at least. I'm not sure how big KORN is outside of the US. Musically the song is good. The lyrics seem a bit downer though but what would one expect from most songs with KORN's lead singer? Nonetheless it seems written by IM. The "I want to sing" dialogue I don't mind.. but I can't understand all of it. There is a really catchy part after the chorus here, beginning from around 1:40 to 1:56 which is great, so catchy, at least I think so. Good work overall. B

 

5. Can't Stop is one of those songs that starts off really good musically. However, the lyrics will make or break this song for numerous listeners, although such lyrics are heavily altered, intended to compliment the music like a sound effect. Unfortunately the dialogue, what is being said, grows tired. IM alters, repeats "Can't stop.. Can't stop..." to the point of near exhaustion into the final third. The altered lyric to music idea is good, but the meaning (can't stop making bad decisions) makes hardly an impact. Why would many people want to have their bad habits reinforced? Furthermore, such dialogue becomes the main focus of the number. The guitar work grows repetitive too, more or less reducing the full effect of what IM is capable of. Overall I don't like this song at all but anything they play in front of crowds will get an energy reaction. However I doubt many will recite back this number's theme in retrospect. C+

 

6. Herbert the Pervert is the first track without vocals or singing. It gets better past the mediocre guitar; the climax take off around 2:10 distracts some of it; this part is great. A strong, musical evolution around 2:40 arrives. The song shifts through various emotions, degrees of energy. Again, I'm not a fan of the guitar here, though it sounds good, more attractive from around 2:50 to 3:03. I like how the song is similar to the adrenaline, take off concept present in Change the Formality from 2006's Vicious Delicious. Whereas they let the movement breath without vocals as they unnecessarily did on a segment of Change the Formality, some listeners will be put off with the fast, recycling guitars, and how they're generally delivered with the intent to enhance the climax. This isn't the best non-lyric psytrance song on the album. Overall I like it, though depending on the guitars, opinions may heavily vary with this number. B+

 

7. Killing Time (Vocals: Perry Farrell) is the second major collaboration track since Smashing the Opponent. It's evident to me that IM made these tracks to accommodate what they lacked on Vicious Delicious, and that is having good singers who can hit the more sensitive notes without sounding whiny. The music is well done; the lyrics are more thoughtful and while the track isn't anything spectacular, I appreciate that. The song is short too; it doesn't take up much time to older fans who are looking forward to the next psytrance track and to IM's advantage, this on is radio play friendly. Good track. B

 

8. Project 100 builds up in it's first minute like a great Juno Reactor song, one echoing importance, proclamation. Chopped up, dynamic vocal effects enhance the number around 2:12. Soon a piano arrives, deepening the song with feeling. The percussion/guitar work is pretty good here, emphasizing anger or determined energy of the driving rhythm. A fresh sound, that which sounds of importance arrives around 3:55 and is joined by relatively fast paced hymns. The song sounds as if telling an epic story across countries, time; it is grounded in the realm of interludes, feeling, and thought with bursts of strength, mainly in the first and last third. A beautiful interlude with a guitar takes place from around 5:30 to 6:00; the guitar work sounds manual, less programmed and repetitive than some of the other guitar/synth work on the album. This segment follows a evolutionary motivating and dynamic final third which develops towards the last two minutes into a less epic, however bubbly, intricate, and delectable fusion of psychedelia. The song is passionately produced, skillfully executed, at times emotive, and fun to listen to. Great track! A-

 

9. Franks is currently my favorite track on the album along with numbers 8, 10, and 12 (amongst others). This gets better as it progresses, starting good and/or great. Combining beauty with aggression, light with dark; the thing is passionately produced, dynamic, emotive, powerful, and one of the most solid songs Infected Mushroom has produced. The first two thirds are great, excellent, but the last third is superb. Franks is one of the best psytrance songs of 2009. Excellent work. A- / A

 

10. Slowly follows the previous gem with less provocative sections, more of a fun, psychedelically playful and danceable response. This has many markings of a great song, from the continuously tweaking, catchy mixing alterations layering, tasty melody/sound work, character (slowly, less slowly, faster) development, feeling, dynamic twists, turns, high energy, pickup, buildup, climax, and that's only the first half of the song! Many of the reasons why we love (okay, for some of us like) Infected Mushroom are right here. The part around 6:47 to 7:15 oozes with feeling. I love it. Soon after the number gets more psychedelic and tasty. One day I hope we get a wonderful, new album with all super lyric-free psytrance songs from IM, or included if they cleverly decide to pack it in a double album. Another great/excellent track! A-

 

11. The Legend of the Black Shawarma starts out strong, deeply emotional, great. Soon, fast paced rhythm kicks in, though this part develops the foundation to upcoming singing where the general style/sound will drastically change, it's good. Those moments really begin around the halfway point. Until then there are some cool echoing vocals around 3:12 vaguely reminiscent of a darker track (to some degree) on B.P. Empire. Lyrics are thoughtful, less absorbed in self. More people can relate to life, death, which is the theme of the song. Good track. B

 

12. Riders on the Storm (Infected Mushroom Rmx) is one of the best lyric/vocal tracks the group has produced to date. I'm happy to see that they didn't cover this song, but cleverly remixed a great track, bringing it to exceptionally modern highs. I really enjoy listening to this song; it provides another dimension, another mood that compliments the album, and smartly placed as a key note to end the album on. Great work and remix! A-

 

In conclusion, this may not cure one's love/hate relationship of the group, but both the vocal and non-vocal tracks are an improvement from Vicious Delicious. The lyrics could have been better at times. Track 1 gets repetitive fast, but in general the arrangement, delivery, and alterations of lyrics make this a serious improvement in IM's vocal department. That said, these artists are producers and could incorporate a beautiful, female voice on a track if they wanted to. Aside from the lyric work, the psy and psytrance work is excellent. There is a certain, fast guitar sound that comes and goes in a few tracks that's generally less dynamic. It's repetitive and could have been improved or omitted altogether with few exceptions. Some of the guitar work is good, more thoughtful, mainly in the later parts of the album where its presence seems less, and I'm fine with that. The album flows the best that an IM album has flowed in a while. I couldn't say that about their last album which was more of a compilation. I'd often skip tracks around songs I just did not enjoy. Energy, thoughts, music, mixing, and delivery is much better throughout this strangely titled album. I hope IM writes even less "self focused" tracks in the future, tracks that more people can relate to, with good messages of fearlessness, freedom, awakening -- because the music itself is excellent. They can reach more audiences if they sing about more important events, themes, topics. For the first time I didn't cringe when hearing Duvdev sing; Sa'eed is well done for instance, though I'm sure older fans will be mixed.

 

Work by Jonathan Davis and Perry Ferrell is good too. I simply wish that various songs were less about the artist (I, Me) because the Killing Time, the self titled track for instance and Riders is relatable, thoughtful, stimulating, and catchy. The song's about our presence on the planet (Why are we here?), continuous challenges in life, the unescapable death we all face -- are universally known topics worth exploring and making great songs about. To the contrary, I'm less interested in hearing a song about a guy who cannot stop making bad decisions, which (cool alterations aside intended to enhance the lyrics to the music) the track Can't Stop focuses such self titled lyrics to tired repetition. The song could be far more powerful if the artists wrote dialogue that people care about, as opposed to one mans illness. I don't exactly rock out to "Can't stop making bad decisions." I prefer "Can't Stop" alone... because I can relate that to Can't stop: dancing, moving forward, goals in life, etc. So, IM has room for improvement, awareness, etc.

 

Overall, this is a mature album, and a healthy return to lyric free psytrance work, mainly in the second half of the album. The psy work gradually gets better as the album progresses. Tracks 6, 8, 9, and 10 are the vocal free numbers. Riders on the Storm (Infected Mushroom Remix) ends Shawarma with a IM slightly speeding up the original classic rock song by The Doors, and remixing, providing it with a great backdrop. For a psy rock song, it's great. Those who stayed with IM through their innovations and still like them should listen to this album, and choose the songs they like the most. I'd rather see Erez and Duvdev go in this direction than whatever they were doing (vocal-wise) in 2006's release. Legend of the Black Shawarma will grow; it is one of the most creative and solid releases of 2009, the best lyric and non-lyric work I've heard by them since Converting Vegetarians - Other Side (2003) and Vicious (2006) respectively. It's more emotive too, without getting cheesy (IMO for the most part) either, fortunately. Solid release.

 

To old school fans of IM: I suggest old school fans listen to the extended samples before buying the album. I do like this album, not all of it, and considering we only get an IM album once every 2-3 years, I'm enjoying the parts I like. That said, I did not like their singing tracks in the past with exception to 2003's experimental CD on Converting Vegetarians, and a few tracks I here I'm not in love with. Furthermore, I cannot look at some of these lyric based tracks as psytrance, so I won't. It is electronica after all. The more I accept that, the more I generally enjoy the album.

 

There is a part of me that thinks that Infected Mushroom must be like: "These old school fans should learn to evolve, experiment, move on from the past." That said, to each their own. I really do like their non rock psytrance tracks the most without singing because I am free to imagine and experience the song in any way I desire.

 

 

Favorite tracks: 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12

 

 

B+

 

 

 

Samples

 

http://www.amazon.com/Legend-Of-The-Black-Shawarma/dp/B002N8TJGS/ref=sr_1_10?ie=UTF8&s=dmusicqid=1252425214&sr=1-10

 

http://www.saikosounds.com/english/display_release.asp?id=8158

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TheJoker    0

The album is indeed interesting, and better than Vicious delicious on every term. Still I can't stand the fusion of metal and psy.

 

That being said, this album is extremely well produced. The sound quality is unparalleled as far as psytrance goes, and the understanding of dynamics provided by IM is breathtaking.

 

For me, this album contains some of the best newer tracks from IM (Project 100, Franks, Slowly) and is definetly a positive suprise.

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Luminon    1

All right. I think I have purged myself off the Infected Mushroom nostalgia. Take things as they are, man. Infected Mushrooms sing, they play guitar, and overall, it's from now on an electronic rock. And honestly, if I'd ever have to trust someone with making a pretty good electronic rock, I'd trust the Mushroom. So I will consider this album as a piece which will be good to play when friends come over from the outer world. Outer world people are characteristic by not appreciating Aes Dana, Solar Fields or FSOL weirdness, so it's good to have something we can enjoy together.

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Penzoline    337

Infected Mushroom - Legend Of The Black Shawarma

Posted Image

1. Poquito Mas 3:39

2. Sa'eed 7:03

3. End of the Road 6:47

4. Smashing the Opponent(Feat. Jonathan Davis) 4:10

5. Can't Stop 7:23

6. Herbert the Pervert 7:17

7. Killing Time(Feat. Perry Farrell) 3:04

8. Project 100 – 9:38

9. Franks 8:05

10. Slowly 9:00

11. The Legend of the Black Shawarma 7:12

12. Riders on the Storm (Infected Mushroom Rmx) 4:29

 

Take it how you will, I'm posting this review for the lulz and to compensate my own disgust towards this release and the fact I actually spent my time listening to it.

 

Poquito Mas

Two facepalms.

 

Sa'eed

Two double facepalms, two facepalms. Pretty catchy though and at parts sounds very nice in the mainstream kind of way.

 

End Of The Road

Two facepalms, one burst to laugh. 5:00 and onwards is actually good though.

 

Smashing the Opponent(Feat. Jonathan Davis)

PsyPop. Cheese. Don't like it. Next.

 

Can't Stop

Two facepalms, one huge double facepalm.

 

Herbert The Perver

I really, really, REALLY don't like the guitars, like, at all. Cheesy to the max.

 

Killing Time (feat perry farrel)

Three double facepalms. This singing is shit pretty much. The only good part was from 2:35 and onwards. Perry Farrel almost lost all my respect with this, but not everything since he was a part of the masterpiece called Hybrid - Dogstar. Please, go back to collaborating with genius's.

 

Project 100

Woo fucking hoo, more guitars.. but wait, it actually sounds kinda good! What in the world is going on!? :blink:

Nevermind, 2:15 ruined all that build-up, fuck these goddamn lyri... oh, 2:37 and they're gone. Yay. Onwards it's pretty good... but 5:50 please no, that acoustic guitar gah. Ah well, that one is gone in 20 seconds aswell. Yay.

Aside from those small pieces of turd that came out of nowhere, this is a pretty good track for what it does. Surprising. Although it tends to get cheesy towards the ending.

 

Franks

Very Good. Highlight of the album. They actually managed to make an interesting and non-cheesy psy track here. More like this please.

 

Slowly

Very good as well, though a little cheesy on the side.

 

The Legend of the Black Shawarma

Can't believe I'm back to the facepalm-disgust-land. Good god..

 

Riders Of The Storm

Some good parts here and there, but goddamn how cheesy it can be. Please, don't do this again.

 

This release is obviously aimed for the masses and with that, I can safely say it will be liked - and bought - by many. Not that I have anything against that, but to me, this sounds mostly just bad, cheesy and facepalm-worthy psy-pop-rock. Although, I can actually go ahead and say I enjoyed it more than countless faceless full-on albums, at least it's original.

All in all, sure, it has it's moments of being being good even to my ears, but the bad overcomes the good in this album - but for what it is supposed to be, it succeeds very well.

 

F+ as in Franks is a plus

lulz

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edit:

Here's a more... straight to the point review of the album in question, courtesy of psyreviews.

An eye opener.

http://psyreviews.net/content/view/642/64/

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