Mind Control, the fourth Tantric album and the second
by the band’s new incarnation, surprises on multiple
fronts. First, it comes just a year after their previous effort, The End Begins, which followed a four-year period
during which all of the original band members except frontman
Hugo Ferreira left and four new musicians entered the fold.
Second, it’s a lot heavier than what I expected from
I have somewhat mixed feelings about this release, though.
I appreciate the more aggressive approach, but the thicker
sound leaves less room for violinist Marcus Ratzenboeck to
roam. His playing stood out on The End Begins, most
effectively on the hit single “Down and Out,”
giving Tantric something other bands don’t have. He’s
still here on Mind Control, and “Coming Undone”
and “Walk Away” show what he is capable of even
in a heavier framework. But guitarist Joe Pessia and Erik
Leonhardt are more prominent in the recording. There’s
nothing wrong with that in and of itself—these are good
songs and Ratzenboeck is still able to add an exotic flavor
to the sound. I guess I wanted something a little more adventurous,
but I remind myself that Tantric began as a guitar-bass-drums
rock band and that’s what they will remain.
My hopes are my problem, not yours. On the whole, Mind
Control is a stronger album than The End Begins,
every song a perfect fit for heavy rotation on your local
rock radio station. It establishes these musicians as not
just the “current version of Tantric,” but as
Tantric, a band that’s here to stay.