Year : 2012
Genre : Alternative Metal, Hard Rock
Label : RoadRunner Records
Origin : United States
Rating : 7.5 / 10
Buy it now
I - a terrible letter to start a review with - just watched the new Stone Sour video "Gone Sovereign", and my expectations were met and not surpassed. Although the clip have sought desperately to put goose bumps on my skin in the process and failed at THAT secondary objective, I have heard a competent take on classic alternative - yes, I just lost a level now - rock. This is his.
The opening track is a picture perfect indication of what the release is all about when on high(ER) octane, though I won't refrain from telling you that the verse-anatomy of said song brings to mind the glam metal connotations of the early '90s, complimented greatly though by Corey Taylor's ripe delivery AND a totally adept, competent guitar solo duel featuring elements and top tier shred passages to put a smile on Michael Angelo's face.
With 43 minutes of playtime, the LP sports a likable length that gives it sufficient amount of real estate to thoroughly cover the premiere motivational dynamics that have NOT changed at ALL with this disc, and I, for one, am happy about this fact. No, I don't mind that Stone Sour always builds on the presence of a gravitational chorus, as long as the chorus kicks butt, and the band has shown on multiple occasions already that they know how to craft a memorable hook that packs dignity, sonic exigency and catchyness at the same time.
With that being said, I must say that the "hey-hey-hey-hey" part of second track, "Absolute Zero" is Non-Heterosexuality Reinvented in my book, - only more gay than that - and the chorus is particularly strong and hefty, but please do realize that the referenced sonic entity is the gravitational hook from a successful Bon Jovi song, if and when inspected as an anatomical construct. Mind you that it does not take anything away from its excellent value.
The third track gives you an example of the exact period of time Corey Taylor can sing for BEFORE reaching the inescapable logical conclusion of ALL his lamentations - solution : himself - and this is 1 minute flat. "You had to give ME your hell". Of COURSE it is about you, Corey. Everything is. The song itself sports a decent chorus, a pretty tepid verse, and an acceptable pre that connects the two with just the sufficient amount of structural variations embedded, and, what I especially like about the song, is the fact that Corey belts out a G sharp note in the chorus, which is not an easy thing to do at all - as you can clearly hear it when Corey Taylor is doing it.
The track "Tired" is pretty nomen est omen in the sense - "sence" for the socioculturally challenged - that it is yet another declaration on an imaginary ego-driven stance - as I truly do not think Corey Taylor would REALLY have a big ego, in interviews he seems very kind and genuine, but thing is: art demands that you pretend to have a big ego, so your fields of observation are not constrained to what you might be missing if you were enlightened or whatnot - and with lyrical themes going along the lines of "So stay away from me, I'm just too young to care", my statement pretty much seems to be sound and defendable, but the song serves out the expectation levels of every spiritual being who thinks that the universe happens to grow out of THEIR heads. Funnily enough, every living being claims this position successfully, in subjective theory. (Corey knows he is right about it, too.) The song is a balladistic soap opera chronicle of a man who is looking for an emotional breakdown at every single reference point existence is capable to offer at its OH!, so evident OH!, so apparent full face value, regardless if and when those have NONE of that to offer, but the protagonist remains intent of finding those, nevertheless. It is not like neutrinos don't exist, you just looking for them the wrong way, you know. It is the 100 and 10th street of alternative metal. Can't I have a nervous breakdown in peace, please? Engineered drama, mostly, made tolerable by Corey Taylor's sound delivery, but the song, in my opinion, is kind of engineered drama, and seems to have sweat as coating, and the title says it all. The epitome of the decent Stone Sour filler track. The song features an orchestra at the climax, all in the spirit of a soap opera theme song, and I'm pretty sure there will be fans crying Dallas on it.
RU486 engages full capacity, and Corey Taylor reveals the fucking Animal for a change. About fucking time, too. The song is a direct spiritual continuation of 2010's great Stone Sour delivery "Mission Statement" - my all time favorite song of this band so far, the sci-fi/existentialist chorus of "Mission Statement" truly shaped my inner workings - and the only thing that I'm not so happy with in the context of THIS track, is an - in my opinion - unsatisfying chorus, but Corey Taylor sounds pretty pissed on the track, probably the most pissed I ever have heard him on a Stone Sour album to this very moment. Pretty awesome.
"My Name Is Allen" is a Foo Fighters song, kinna', and Taylor speaks in the pre in menacing Philip Anselmo style. It is not bad at all, but Anselmo still is "badasser" in this regard, because he never had to rely on vocal fry to sound badass, whereas(s) Corey here imitates Anselmo, which I find hilarious. The song itself is a filler.
"Taciturn" is Corey Taylor's gift for the female Stone Sour fans who are in love with him, - and every female Stone Sour fan is in love with Corey, you got that? - and I of course has no objection against the gesture, nor I have an opinion on the song, because my opinion on it is not relevant.
From this point on to the next two consecutive tracks, the album exhibits a heavily post-grunge, radio friendly flavor, and it is exigently constructed, but it offers not enough excitement for me to write about them elaborately. Once again, they are exigently constructed radio friendly post-grunge declarations that are absolutely compatible with a rainy day if and when you have a woman to hold unto in the meantime. If not, what the fuck are you listening to this music for?
"Last of the Real" is Guns 'N Roses' "Welcome to the Jungle", I swear to you! Even the harmonic structure is similar. I realize the importance of "Welcome to the Jungle", though I confess it never was my favorite Guns 'N Roses song, - probably because of Axl's pornographic vocal mancunt display at the middle, WTF??! - though I know every Gun 'N Roses song by heart, and am not afraid to admit. Other than that, this particular Stone Sour song is not a great way to conclude the album with, in my opinion.
The LP, as a whole though, emerges successful at meeting a layered set of expectations. Luckily, it has more of the intense moments than the moody post-grunge drama, and, it packs a set - not more, unfortunately - exceptionally strong choruses. "Absolute Zero" is my current personal favorite with its clever chorus that balances the ethos of glam metal between cheese and awesomeness, minus the ultragay "hey hey hey" part, but "hey", it got me gaying!
Oh, and of COURSE I like Corey Taylor, that is the only reason I feel obliged to tamely pick on him, especially since I can imagine the immensity of the fuck he gives about the fact of some random critic prick picking on him, too. If I would not like Corey Taylor, I wouldn't write this much about this album, trust me. Say what you want about Corey Taylor, he is a top tier screamer - and NOT of a Metal Co.. Whore fake-ass fry scream "kind" - and a very competent and exceptionally powerful mid-range singer with tremendous talent at revealing emotional tendencies bordering on the - SIC! - skillfully mimed borderline, and, of course, this is part of the fun, and it does not matter - all that much - that the drama sometimes is evidently engineered for the mere sake of forming an excuse to bath in your maximum voice volume which is Corey Taylor's all time favorite thing to do, and this is much more fortunate than if he would not want to do it at all. A strong, and safe recommendation for alternative metal/rock fans, and, of course, an immediate recommendation for the Stone Sour fan. This is his. This is his. This is his. This is his.
Rating : 7.5 / 10
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