Arriving on the scene the same time as nu-metal, Illinois’ Mudvayne refer to themselves as “math metal,” citing the band’s near-to-inhuman tempo and arrangement intricacies. Nevertheless, Mudvayne — outfitted with always-changing horror costumes, masks, makeup and pseudonyms — rose to the top of the nu-metal heap and supported the bill for Metallica’s 2003 Summer Sanitarium metalfest. Mudvayne were nominated in 2003 and 2005 for three Grammys and won an MTV Award for the video of the song, “Dig.”
The band’s hardcore metal (though not sung in the stereotypical death metal grunt) has turned up in movie soundtracks (Saw II), WWE pay-per-views (Vengeance), and even in an episode of The Sopranos.
Ryan Martinie joined the band in 1998, replacing bassist Shawn Barclay. Martinie’s algebraic approach brought sharper focus to Mudvayne’s unorthodox song structure. Released in 2002, the band’s L.D. 5 is a lesson in thrash aggression and nu-metal modernism.