OUT TODAY – Cell Games Return With New Single ‘The Optical World’ – (Irish Nu-metal)

Jodorowsky’s Dune and Deftones are strange bedfellows, perhaps no weirder than Jodorowsky’s Dune itself, but they were the two main influences as Cell Games crafted their new single ‘The Optical World’. As expected, the composite results of blending these elements together produced something dark and strangely beautiful. The gestation period for this band was elongated as the world shut down. This allowed time and perspective for the band to refine a sound that led to singles ‘Here’s To Your Bones’, ‘Jailbreak’ and most recently ‘Ego Sum Papa’. The band return with ‘The Optical World’ to claim the crown.

Cell Games – The Optical World (Spotify Link)

Cell Games – The Optical World (Official Video)

The horror that the world lived through during the pandemic took its toll on the populus but conversely it gave people time. Those with a creative passion took this time to write, create and produce. This is exactly what Tristan Carroll (guitar, backing vocals) and Maximillion Foy (vocals) did. Undeterred by the inability to form a full band they treated the band initially as a recording project. Debut single ‘Lament Configuration’ acted as their flag in the moon moment. Pulling heavily from the nu-metal genre while leaning into the production of the track helped established their signature sound. Not relying on typical genre tropes, they bring a contemporary approach to the genre. Once the veil began to lift on the world the line up was completed by Deb Finn-O’Brien (bass, backing vocals) and Tonči Vrdoljak (drums).

The bands uncompromising sound caught the sharpened ears of audiences and press alike: The Beat “Nu-metal banger”, Metal Asylum “Anthemic”, Hard Beat “A pounding homage to the early noughties” and Gig Radar “A nu-metal revival we’ve been waiting for”.

No strangers to incorporating pop culture influences and references to their sound (the name comes from a Dragonball Z story arc), as they started writing their new single ‘The Optical World’ the drew inspiration from the documentary about the failed adaption of Frank Herberts epic, Jodorowsky’s Dune. The track started out life as a demo Tristan brought to the band but after everyone took their respective hammers to the anvil it took on a different life. The band instantly create tension through some delay sprinkled chords as the intro to the song, it’s the quiet before the inevitable storm we know is coming. The disquiet is broken by an avalanche of double kicks and an empyrean scream. Walls of thick crunchy guitars punctuate the verse with a constant single piano key creating a sense of stress. Lyrically it delves into dangers and pitfalls of hero worship, as exemplified in Jodorowsky’s Dune, how sycophantic devotion can blind to the emptiness found in false deities. The chorus opens up into swathes of soaring celestial guitars and vocals. Here in lies the tracks special alchemy, as Maximillion’s vocals are joined by Tristan and Deb on backing vocals, this additional tonal texture layers in another hook to the already massive chorus. Tonči and Deb are locked in throughout the track, the drums sound huge delivering gut punch snare accents while the bass adds a gnarly bottom end to the impenetrable walls of Tristans guitar.

The band weave groove with significant heaviosity and heft but still leave space for melody, harmonies and vocals hook. This along with the impeccable production make ‘The Optical World’ stand out amongst their contemporaries, and help bring a fresh contemporary approach the genre, helping rejuvenate nu-metal for 2024.

This continues through the art created by Jade Costello and the lyric video created by Keith Brogan. Both lean heavily into a modern brutalist art approach, the omnipresent influence of Dune is felt here with a speckling of retro-futurist sci-fi in the art.

Jodorowsky said, “What is the goal of the life? It’s to create yourself a soul. For me, movies are an art and it’s the search of the human soul.” It’s this search and mining of the soul that can be heard on The Optical World.


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