Thursday, October 17, 2013

One year and six days after they launched their last album, let's talk about Papa Roach - Part 7

So this is it, the moment we've been expecting: Papa Roach's latest album review, "The Connection".

This one, as with "Metamorphosis", starts with an Intro song which, like in "Days of War", also sets the tone for the album. It says "revolution" like "Days of War", but using more electric sounds, which, as we progress through the album, we see that that is the set-up indeed.

When I first listen to the album, not really paying the attention it deserved, I didn't liked it. All the electric sound effects in "Still Swinging", "Silence is the Enemy", "Walking Dead" (all three which, btw, mark the return of "revolution songs", hence the importance of breaking down Papa Roach to styles before reviewing this album) and, most of all, "Leader of the Broken Hearts" sounded like all the modern pop-stars songs. But then I saw beyond it and, like I said, the use of these electric sounds are a modernization of their style, since they once also used electric styles that were mainstream and cheesy at the time.

That would be the main problem with the album and once you realize it is not a problem, you can start enjoying to what may very well be their best album. "Still Swinging" is a shout out to their classics, along with "Won't Let Up", bringing back rap verses, while "Not Beautiful" is awesome because it is heavy and has a "Broken Home"/"She Loves Me Not" style rap, during the bridge I mean.

The album has all of the song styles I mentioned in the other albuns, being a culmination of what they have been growing to be.

Jacoby's voice is better than ever in most of the songs like "Wish You Never Met Me", "Leader of the Broken Hearts" and "Give Me Back My Life". I also love how deep the lyrics were in "Leader of the Broken Hearts", I only got to know its meaning after watching the video.

As a band, I think they reach a high point specially during the song "Where Didi The Angels Go", which is, in my opinion, their heaviest song. I mean, God, look at that riff! Also, those screams at the end, holy shit, what a great song.

That face in the vid though
Also, their love for zombies really starts to show at this point. Not only did they have a song in which they said the title of the most famous zombie game ever like 10 times, they went to name a song after the most famous zombies series, "Walking Dead", which isn't about zombies, but indeed a "revolution song", at some point. On that note, I think the song could have been heavier instrumentally, lyrically it was really good. Also, "Still Swinging" 's video has zombies being blown up by energy blasts.

To finish up this long long article that led up to this great album, a negative thing: Why would you end up the album with "As Far As I Remember"? Actually the end of the song is great for the end of the album, but the rest is not! It's too slow of an end for a fast paced album! You should have there "Silence Is The Enemy", to finish it up with a "revolution song"! Hell yeah!

So this is it guys, finally done. I hope you enjoyed this and, if you were not a fan already, I hope you got to understand Papa Roach at least a bit like me. As a bonus, here's a promo pic of them looking good - but covered in white gooey stuff.

Me out.

PS: THERE. A seven piece article! I do think my reward should be a concert here in Portugal! Please..?

One year and five days after they launched their last album, let's talk about Papa Roach - Part 6

It's "Time for Annihalation"! See what I did there?

First of all, bassist Tobin Esperance should be quoted, to put this album in context: "We put out five major label, full-length records, and we were transitioning from a major label, going independent, and we wanted to do something different [...] we'd always talked about doing a live record, and it turned into 'let's add a couple of bonus songs' [...] and now it's half live, half new songs and it's kind of the past and present of Papa Roach, and I think it's a good representation and a good reminder of what this band's about, [...] and it gives you a look at where our sound can go."

That being said, the argument of them being lazy and not making a full album would be nonsense, since they were kind enough to include new songs in what would be a live only album.

First we'll talk about the Live part. The song selection could be heavier, but it is very good overall, since they are all hits. Also, it's great to hear them play, how they matured over the years, even though Jacoby still (and always will - I'm not complaining) does those mentions like "This song comes from the fucking heart" and "I love these guys", when referring to the band. I actually like it. The thing that bugs me in this part is that there is a second guitar, but the band only has one. And after a quick googling I couldn't find out why. So either they had another guy helping out or it was on playback to make the song more full and powerful. I don't really like any of the options, but oh well.

As for the new songs, they are pretty awesome, everyone of them different and each has its own Papa Roach style. No "revolution songs" though, which is kind of disappointing. You have the "betrayal song", the "I Almost Told You That I Love You song", the "me against the world song", the ballad and the "self-struggle song". I could go without the song that heavily hints sex and have a revolution one instead...

I'll start by that one, "One Track Mind". I honestly think it's the most "meh" song of the five, the one you feel like you've heard before and the one with the most boring lyrics. "Burn" is pretty awesome, has a pretty powerful chorus and the verse is sung with hate, you can feel it. It also has that electronic start which will be important for the culmination of this article. "The Enemy" is great actually, for me it's the best "self-struggle" one of them all. Both lyrically and instrumentally; specially the bass. I also think it makes a great transition from the new songs to the live part of the album.

The ballad, "No Matter What" is very good too and all the few flaws that it may have, the acoustic (acoustic of a ballad!) version gets rid of them and it gets really great to hear it as the slow song that it is.

Finally there's "Kick In The Teeth". For me this is the most important song of the album. I talked of how "Burn" uses those electronics, but "Kick In The Teeth" make them a real part of the song, like an extra instrument that is always there. If you think about it, Papa Roach did that in the start, only electronic sound then was different from electronic sound now, so for me what "Kick In The Teeth" is is a modern version of old Papa Roach, mostly since it is "me against the world" style of song. And the song gets even more important since "The Connection", their latest album, uses that premise... But we'll get to that later, won't we?

PS: I'll Kick you In The Teeth if you don't come here?

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

One year and four days after they launched their last album, let's talk about Papa Roach - Part 5

We now advance to the first album they did without founding drummer, Dave Buckner. To fill up the spot came in Tony Palermo and I must say that he came out pretty strong, being that said album is "Metamorphosis".

"Metamorphosis" is brutal. It's everything that "Getting Away With Murder" and "The Paramour Sessions" wanted to be, and you know I don't consider those two bad, I even consider them great.

It's the first album to have an "Intro" song, those songs that last one minute plus something. And I got to say, they chose well. "Days of War" pretty much sets up the rest of the album, puts it in context, in only that one minute. You don't have words, but the title of the song and the instruments all scream "REVOLUTION".

That's right. "Revolution songs" were back.

Right after Tony showed off his skills mashing the drum-set in "Days of War", the awesome guitar line of "Change or Die" starts to play and the first words you hear, while alreay hype from Jerry's magic, are an exciting "LET'S GOOOOOO". Not original, I know, but it goes so well with the song that you go along. So that is the first "revolution song" of the album. It's different from the old Nu Metal revolution like in "Between Angels and Insects", but this still works and it felt good knowing that they were back to spreading ideals. Besides, "Change or Die" is a really powerful song, I can't imagine how exciting and tiring at the same time it is to sing it all for Jacoby.

Then we have another single, "Hollywood Whore". I love the guitar riff and the ending, Jacoby goes ape shit and starts screaming and at the end acts like a maniac with the line "Don't let the door hit you where the Good Lord split you honey", laughing maniacally right after.

"I Almost You That I Love You" was always weird for me. It has great vocals, great instrumentals, but it's style doesn't fit in with the rest. Sure, isn't the first time they talked about sex, but never like in this song! Well, rockstars will be rockstars.

We have then another song on self-struggle, a style that we're used to at this point, "Lifeline". It's comparable to "Scars" in a way that it's not slow but it is slow, making it a great song to hear when in the mood.

Then three more (not straight) "revolution songs". Man they were on fire! And I got to say, putting "March Out Of The Darkness" right before "Into The Light" was a pretty great move. Same happens to the album beginning with "Days of War" and (almost) ending with "Nights of Love".

Being used to the other albuns, this one startles you when you are getting near the end and two slow songs come straight. Like in "Reckless", "Carry Me" holds a lot of meaning for me, but I think it should be more in the middle.

The last track though, takes that of our mind. "State of Emergency" is GREAT as a song and even greater as a closer. It really goes with the flow that post-apocalyptic ending with the guitar sounding like a melodic distress siren far away and the sounds of someone talking on a radio... Really really great. Also, the song makes me want to kill zombies in Left 4 Dead. No wonder, since they seem like  they desperatly want to make the soundtrack of the game by saying "Left for dead" like four times just before the song ends.

So like that ends the, in my opinion, heaviest Papa Roach album at this point, which is always good. It's good that they come back to "revolution songs" but at the same time bad because they left it in the first place. Also, always struck me odd the way that they start "Change or Die" with "This is a battle call / To one to all" and "Into The Light" with "This is a warning / My final warning". I don't know, seemed similar, don't know why.

Kuddos PRoach, this is a really great one.

Unfortunatly this album came with their worst looks. Tony is the one who looks best, and he's just like "Hey, I'm here"

Bah look at this! Mr. Dick ('cause I'm nasty) looks like that guy from Escape The Fate, ugh

PS: Keeping on insiting on you guys coming heeeeere!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

One year and three days after they launched their last album, let's talk about Papa Roach - Part 4

Two in one day! How cool am I?

"The Paramour Sessions" continued the path that "Getting Away With Murder" carved for Papa Roach.

This album is the same style as "GAWM", as so, there the "heh" songs and the awesome ones. Also, it's in this album that you can confirm Papa Roach's ability to get you hype. And by hype I mean FUCKING HYPE. They always did with songs like "Last Resort", "She Loves Me Not" and "Getting Away With Murder", but then comes "The Paramour Sessions", opening with "To Be Loved" which blows your fucking head off right off the bat.

As with previous album, this one focuses on self-struggle and one's goals and mainly on relationship problems. "Forever" is a great ballad, really well sung and heart-felt in the chorus and towards the end. "Time Is Running Out" is really exciting, getting me pumped every time with those chants in the beginning and "My Heart Is A Fist" may very well be the most underrated Papa Roach song, because you don't hear it anywhere and it's simply brutal. Out of the album I'd say it's the most heart-felt, you hear all these metaphors of how he's down in a hole, hear a powerful, simple chorus but then all of a sudden you have a guy pissed off and feeling powerless, screaming at God. I can only imagine Jacoby on his knees while screaming (obviously) "I SEE YOU ON YOUR CLOUD / LOOKING DOWN! / I'M ON MY KNEES TO PRAY / BUT YOU DON'T NOTICE ME". "Brilliant" is the word.

I think this album is the weakest of all (not as in "not good") and this is why: The ending. I believe a really good album has to maintain it's hype, being the hype low or high. If you have slow songs, you have to scatter them so the album doesn't lose it's hype. But on "Paramour Sessions" you get three slow songs to end it. I love "Reckless", it even has a special meaning to me, "The Fire" is a song I can do without and "Roses On My Grave" maybe has a special meaning for them, but I just thing all these should be scattered around the album. I said this about "GAWM" and "Do or Die" wasn't slow, so it gets even worse here. This one should have ended with "My Heart Is A Fist", no doubt.

So this is, for me, their "less good" album, even though I love most of the songs. Then again, I'm a huge fan and love most of all songs. Still, the reasons are here.

And I must say, I don't like Jacoby's visual here... Jerry looks cool though, and Dave Buckner, too. He was a very good drummer for their first movement and it was sad this was his last album. Even so, no complaints from Tony Palermo.

PS: Hey Tony, I had your back just now, please convince the guys to come to Portugal!

What's national is good

I don't know at what point the portuguese band Pushed Mind is recognized outside their country, but I feel it isn't enough. And there are bands like these in every country, but this one I feel I can give a push, so here goes.

Pushed Mind is a Metalcore/Heavy Metal/Death Metal... Damn, Sometimes I'm not very good with styles. In my own knowledge I'd place them in between those three. I'll say they did what only pros do (and not every pro), found a balance between screaming dark vocals and the instruments that go along, giving you a confortable feel of fucking metal.

From an amateur band (since they're starting) you'd maybe expect an harsh sound, something that at times would make you cringe or shudder. At least that would happen to some metal fans when listening to some hardcore/metalcore songs. But no, Pushed Mind found the balance and I, for one, just listened to their whole album while thinking "this is good" as in the most sincere "this is good" I've ever thought.

Comparing it to renowned metal band Avenged Sevenfold - and, as you know, one of my favourites -, which started out as Metalcore with "Sounding The Seventh Trumpet" I can honestly say that their first album "BĂȘte Noir" is a better debut in the genre that "Sounding The Seventh Trumpet", just to make you understand the comparison I made earlier.

Speaking of their album, they released it. It's called "BĂȘte Noir", Dark Beast, in english. 11 songs, 5 minutes average, great, clean sound, this is the start of every known band. You can listen to the album and, without any background, you wouldn't say it was a first.

They promoted the album at, so I'll just leave the site HERE so you can listen to it. 

So this is it, I've done what I think I should. I hope they get the recognition they deserve and wish all the luck to Pushed Mind.

Me out.

One year and three days after they launched their last album, let's talk about Papa Roach - Part 3

You must have guessed by now that we're going to talk about Papa Roach's third album, "Getting Away With Murder".

This was a huge turning point for Papa Roach. As I said before, "Lovehatetragedy" opened the doors for the world of hard rock to them and they stepped right in with this new album. They dropped the Nu Metal act, no more rap, no more revolution, just straight feels and frontal attacks.

And in "frontal attacks" we have very little, because I am only refering to the song "Tyranny of Normality", that talks about the media. Very good lyrics, the song is powerful, but - don't know why - it doesn't moves me. Good song, I listen to it, but heh.

As that song, this album brought other songs that don't get me as hype as the rest, which usually didn't happen in the other two albuns. "Blanket of Fear" and "Stop Looking Start Seeing" are the ones I talk about. But hey, 3 songs out of twelve? Not bad at all.

The album starts off with "Blood", a song about betrayal, setting the mood - lyrically speaking - for the rest of the album. The song itself is a great opener, starts off slow for a few words, then it gets fast and then they wreck it all up when Jacoby starts screaming and the chords and drums get faster.

Then "Stop Looking Start Seeing" introduces a new theme that would become recorrent in Papa Roach songs with the lines "My enemy is not alone / In the mirror there's a stranger". Self-struggle and trying to fight yourself out of the whole you dug yourself. You see it at least two more times in "Be Free" and "Take Me".

Then there are the hits, "Getting Away With Murder" and "Scars". Both songs are really really great, both talk of suffering you caused on yourself because of others. In the album titled they talk about not being able to stop the punishment of a relationship, walking the line where you want out but you will never want out. This, along with the great bass line, the whispering "getting away getting away" and then the repetition of the first verse but while screaming makes for a great song. As for "Scars", it isn't really a ballad but it isn't really a fast song, so it stands on the line that you like to hear when you're both sad and angry, which is, I think, just what they wanted, when talking about being dragged to the bottom by someone who you were just trying to help.

To finish, I think they could have chosen a stronger closing song, even though "Do or Die" is one of my favourites. Like "Take Me", it would have been good. But you can see from the lyrics that "Do or Die" holds a meaning for them, so maybe that's that.

An album of dare, "Getting Away With Murder" marked the definitive road of Papa Roach, being a very good album in itself.

Me out.

PS: Still waiting here for you, guys.

Monday, October 14, 2013

One year and two days after they launched their last album, let's talk about Papa Roach - Part 2

Obviously on Part 2 of this post I'll talk about "Lovehatetragedy", Papa Roach's second album.

First of all, what a creepy ass cover!

Second, yes, it was a great album. "She Loves Me Not" makes it a great album on itself! But let's break it up, shall we?

In this second album, PRoach lost their touch or will of "revolution songs". Maybe "Code of Energy" is kind of a shout out to the way world treats people, but I think I'm on a stretch here. To add to that, the "suffering songs" still exist but they turned the attention from general suffering like in "Last Resort" and "Never Enough" to the suffering in a relationship ("She Loves Me Not", "Decompression Period"...) and not only are all the songs trully heart-felt, so much that you can hear the feels, but they also connected with the fans, like they did with "Infest". To prove the "heart-feltness", Jacoby was said to be having problems with his now long-time wife, Kelly, during the writting of the albums. Don't worry, she did love you after all!

This album opened doors to what Papa Roach would become. Unfortunatly, it was the last to have them awesome Jacoby-rap parts until "The Connection". But it still opened the doors to a more brutal sound, instrumentally speaking and lyrically Papa Roach started to focus on the relationship suffering, suffering of close ones, being one against the world (not in a revolution way) and simply fucking things up with music ("M-80", the openning track).

So awesome sound, awesome lyrics, awesome rap parts, that can only make an awesome album. Very good one.

Also, Jacoby was blonde with short hair.

Me out.

PS: You guys have to come to Portugal. Seriously.