Each year, metal bands seem to grow increasingly technical, a trend the New Jersey six-piece The Number 12 Looks Like You has certainly embraced. However, the band's latest release, Mongrel, trades show-offy self-indulgence for ambient atmospherics and solid grooves, making for an album that's as listenable as it is jaw-dropping. In fact, songs such as "Jaywalking Backwards" and "El Piñata De La Muerte" evoke Genesis if they were a metal band and specifically, if Phil Collins traded his sport jacket for a copy of the Satanic Bible and a matching set of vocal pipes. With technical-metal forebears such as the Dillinger Escape Plan seemingly missing in action for the past year and a downright emphatic reaction to Mongrel The Number 12 Looks Like You just might be poised to take over the world.
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