|Add Date:||2003-04-21|| ||Pull Date:||2003-06-23|| ||Charts:||Loud|
|Week Ending:||8 Jun||1 Jun||25 May||18 May||11 May||4 May||27 Apr|
Voivod – Voivod (Chophouse Records)|
Take a deep breath. Let’s begin at the beginning. Voivod used to be an awesome “progressive thrash metal” band, but then their vocalist and bassist left, so they replaced them both with one bassist/vocalist, Eric Forrester. Cool dude and all, but the band kinda lost its charm and weirdness that gained them such an amazing cult following to begin with. Then Eric Forrester left, and the band’s future was uncertain for sometime. :::dramatic pause::: Enter former-Metallica bassist Jason Newsted. Having been a huge fan of the band in their early days, he personally financed their efforts to record a new album, and offered to record the bass tracks for it. On top of that, original vocalist Snake decides to rejoin. After some jamming, it was decided that Newsted would join the band officially. And so it was. And so it is. And it’s fucking awesome! Sure, it’s not the thrash metal Voivod we’ve all grown to love so much. Instead, this is more like hard-rock, borderline pop metal. Don’t be fooled, though, there’s nothing pop about this album outside of a few song constructions. The guitars are still as trippy and spacey and odd-beyond-belief as ever. The only little problem here is Snake’s vocal work. He seems to have embraced a style where he just spouts out the words in a very monotonous way and decides to emphasize certain unusual things. But even that will grow on you, trust me. This album fucking rules. It should be, like, on a permanent A-file. Forever.
1) Very simple three-chord progression makes for the most memorable riff I’ve heard in a very long time. Quite possibly the best song on here, definitely my favorite, and it has some excellent lyrics, too.
2) This song starts out with this gigantic groove, it’s huge, like a fuckin’ MechWarrior or something. And then the verse is so weird and strange, and the chorus is even more bizarre, and I love it so very much.
3) Awesome song about how our leaders have failed us, and it comes courtesy of a great riff and very nice drumming.
4) Intro starts out with a single simple little riff accentuated by these bell-like chords that make it so sci-fi (read: classic Voivod), and then the drums and guitar weave in and out making for a perfect blend of beats and riffs, and dry vocals and solid bass.
5) Wow! A vicious attack on consumer culture, sung with a lot of passion. The bass on this is neat, too, very straightforward and fast, whereas the guitar just does the usual oddball things. Awesome song. And it’s so melodic to boot.
6) Quiet, mellow, spacey guitars (it’s all about the reverb, baby) that once again evoke that feeling of sci-fi, “Twilight Zone”-type fear. Very moody, dark sounding, but it eventually develops into trademark Voivod about sci-fi themes and parallel universes. Very spiffy.
7) Here we get emotional. This is a very heartfelt, pained delivery of a song about the reunion of these once-alienated friends who are now performing together again. Listening to Snake sing “You know, we never really had it easy/Sometimes life is too complicated/For now, we just wanna forget it/We’re here in front of you”, man it brings a tear to my otherwise dry eyes (allergy season).
8) Goofy, geeky song about UFOs, practically a worshipping ode to them. Fun little tune, but tongue-very-firmly-in-cheek. Very straight-ahead rock riff, nicely highlighted by some just out-of-this world guitar work.
9) Very unique sound on this one, although the intro is a bit like Halford’s song of the same name. This is where the vocals might get a little on your nerves, so try to avoid if you like your vocalists singing and stuff (pfffft!).
10) A very metal tune, with some tight, yet loose drumming. Again, typical Voivod themes abound, plus there’s a quick nice little solo that sounds like an alarm going off.
11) More typical Voivod tune, sung from the point of view of a doomed space traveler. Great song.
12) Enter the bass solo! It’s short (the solo), but it’s sweet. And, godammit, when was the last time Jason Newsted pulled out a bass solo in the studio? That’s right. So enjoy it. Good song, too, by the way. It’s all about how strange and ironic it is that we believe in God after all the good things monotheistic religion has brought out in humankind. Not like I’m taking sides or anything...
13) Awesome song. Very straight-forward hard rock, but with another heartfelt message (like track 7) that touches me. I like it.
To conclude, this is totally sweet! And by that I mean, awesome!