Circus of Fools cd cover

Machine Men

Circus of Fools

I'll admit I panicked when I heard the first song. It's bad. And it's the title track. That's not a good sign. There is a really unpleasant speed metal thing going on that I just wasn't prepared for and don't like at all. It's a shame too because the chorus was good. And just when I was starting to get over it, we get it again in the chorus of Tyrannize and then worse towards the end of the cd in Border of the Real World and Dying Without a Name. Two great choruses wasted in just disjointed, thrashy songs. I'm not sure where this sudden Slayer influence came from, but it really hurt the flow of this album. And with only nine tracks, they really couldn't afford to squander those melodies. Because even though parts of the songs are memorable, as soon as you start to think "Oh yeah, this was one of the songs I liked" they stomp all over it with an awful, stuttering drum beat or jackhammer guitar riff. So you're left with some good songs surrounded by noise, and while the album closes on a better note, it wasn't a strong enough track to erase the damage that had been done, so it just seems weird and out of place. On the upside, there are four or five really good songs on this cd. For most bands that is pretty good, but Machine Man is better than that. They are better than this. But even though it's a step back for them, it's still better than most of the stuff coming out now. Songs like No Talk Without the Giant, Where I Stand and Shadow Gallery still make this a must have for me. Hopefully they will cut back on the caffeine before they record their next one. --Scott

Average Rathole Visitor Rating7.5

Track Listing

  1. Circus of Fools
  2. No Talk Without the Giant
  3. Ghost of the Seasons
  4. Tyrannize
  5. The Shadow Gallery
  6. Where I Stand
  7. Border of the Real World
  8. Dying Without a Name
  9. The Cardinal Point


VOCALS: Toni Parviainen
Jani Noronen
BASS: Eero Vehnišinen
DRUMS: Jarno Parantainen
GUESTS: Marco Hietala
Tommi Salmela
Rainer Nygard
Keijo Niinimaa
Jarno Moberg
Ilari Heinaaho
Petri Koskimaki


LABEL: Century Media
PRODUCED BY: Samu Oittinen
“Remember the stories of the days of Salem? Remember the trials and the tribulations? Always a reason for a true conviction, always the season for a crucifiction.”