Some general impressions
It had become very silent around Papa Roach after their second Major-Release 'Love Hate Tragedy'. The album was like a rock in the shelves of record stores, too bad to pick it up. Back in the days, when I got into stuff like Papa Roach, Linkin Park and Limp Bizkit (cut me some slack, everyone has to start somewhere...), I was a huge fan of 'Infest'. But the follow up disappointed, I gave it a listen in my local record store and did not spend a cent on getting it in my hands.
So, really interested and curious about what the band now does, I went to listen to the newest baby, 'Getting away with murder'. Big surprise. "Wow, that does not sound like Infest-stuff at all..." Something like that were my thoughts after my first listen. The track that gets closest to old Papa Roach is the title track. Yet, it's far away from it.
What changed then? The first thing you'll notice is the actual singing of frontman Jacoby Shadix. You can call it that now in fact. He has really worked on his vocals, rap-metal vocals do barely show up, if at all. It is more a good (not Grade A, but good) rock singer's voice. With the occasional scream part in it. A lot of props for that advance.
The guitar sound changed as well, so slightly did the bass. All in all, this sounds like Modern Rock music, instead of Nu-Metal. Probably the only thing that has not changed are the topics of the lyrics. Still on the same 'angsty teenager'-level they were on the albums before.
Yet, through the other changes, the lyrics seem more mature too. If I had to name a band, that made a successful change of style and really improved their sound and musical work after a ****ty album, Papa Roach are the first that come to my mind. Nice work.
What I really like about the album:
Like I mentioned already, I'm really surprised and impressed by the vocal work. The major improvement of all. Nice are also the new steps Papa Roach take. The majority of the songs sound angry, but not as whining as the older material. It has some bright and friendly touch to it, while being angry (Stop looking, Done with you). Nice combination. We also have a song that is in major parts an acoustic song (Sometimes). The song 'Scars' is probably the most happy song I heard by Papa Roach so far. Talking about unheard things by a band.
What was not so good:
Gosh, things I did not like...? Hard to say. It's a really great album. But though it is a good album, it did not survive uber-long on my iPod regular playlists. So, maybe it's getting a bit old fast, but as I write this review and listen to the album at the same time...I think something’s getting back on the road with me. Some of the older bass lines were real nice, and more foreground. Now, it's 'only background work' in a way. For a bassist as me, that matters... Plus, there is some guitar work that suggests there are two guitars at work. Only one guitarist there? Sounds nice, but I always wonder how they do it then live, if it works 'only in the studio'. Bugs me, I know it's a dumb reason.
I know I repeat myself, but this is a great make-over. This band has successfully made the jump from a Nu-Metal-Trend band, to a solid modern-rock band. My musical taste evolved a lot from the days I listened to 'Infest', and as far as I moved away from the Nu-Metal days, Papa Roach have re-invented their musical work. You can finally speak of singing, the instruments work really good with each other. One unit, so to speak.
As I find it hard to highlight single songs from the album (nonetheless, I'll try below), I would suggest take it for a test drive at your music store if possible. It sure is worth a listen.
My song suggestions:
"Getting away with murder" - First single and title track. Papa Roach, and yet not.
"Scars" - From the feel of the song quite happy, with a little melancholic touch. Really good
"Sometimes" - Acoustic guitar and Papa Roach? Hear that that is possible, and sounds good, too.
"Do or die" - Dark verses, but bright up Chorus. Worth a listen.
Nah, this is bad even for Papa Roach. The title track is a good example; the singer has lost any sense of originality he had and now just sounds goofy, the guitars are embarassingly back in the mix to the point that they're not even important, the bass line is awful, and it sounds like a rap song because it's so rhythm-oriented.
I like the simple format you've got on your reviews, Damrod. br3ad_man said in another thread on here that most reviews are becoming too long, and I kind of agree with him, because I only read a few reviews all the way though every couple of days now. But the two you've posted tonight, I've read completely. And I haven't heard either album.
What I've heard of this (about 3 or 4 tracks) seems like a giant step forwards. I hated LHT, and Infest was a direct half-and-half split between songs I love and songs I hated. This looks like a good album, but through experience, I'm a little skeptical of how consistent it will be.
[QUOTE=Damrod]Plus, there is some guitar work that suggests there are two guitars at work. Only one guitarist there? Sounds nice, but I always wonder how they do it then live, if it works 'only in the studio'. Bugs me, I know it's a dumb reason. [/QUOTE]
AFI do the same thing - or at least, they did on Sing The Sorrow. When I saw them live, one guitar part was on a backing track. Then again, I've seen the Manics on some downloaded mpegs, and James Dean Bradfield tackled songs with 3 guitars parts, and seemed to play all of them at once by changing chord voicings and, at one point, using what looked like hybrid picking.
Papa Roach, as condescending as it may sound, probably use a backing track.
[QUOTE=Iai]AFI do the same thing - or at least, they did on Sing The Sorrow. When I saw them live, one guitar part was on a backing track. Then again, I've seen the Manics on some downloaded mpegs, and James Dean Bradfield tackled songs with 3 guitars parts, and seemed to play all of them at once by changing chord voicings and, at one point, using what looked like hybrid picking.
Papa Roach, as condescending as it may sound, probably use a backing track.[/QUOTE]
Yes, they probably do. They definetly have layered guitar parts, which is cool, but only one guitarist far as I know.
Now Godsmack on the other hand, Sully busts out rhythm guitar live, which shocked the hell out of me, cause I thought it was all overdubbed. :thumb:
[QUOTE=Iai]I like the simple format you've got on your reviews, Damrod. br3ad_man said in another thread on here that most reviews are becoming too long, and I kind of agree with him, because I only read a few reviews all the way though every couple of days now. But the two you've posted tonight, I've read completely. And I haven't heard either album.
Is that why you've more or less moved out of CD Reviews?
No, I've moved out because I've had no real time to write any reviews, thanks to college and my girlfriend. And the longer I spend in here, the more tempted I get to write a review, the more it upsets me that I can't, and the guiltier I get that I still have dibs on so many albums......:upset:
[QUOTE=The JoZ]...Am I the only one who really liked the title track?
It sounded darker and slightly heavier than other stuff they had written, I thought...[/QUOTE]
I liked it actually. It had to grow on me a bit, the first two times or so I heard and saw it on MTV, I thought 'WTF? That is WHO? Papa Roach?' They look a bit strange now, but as said before, I would not say like the 'prophets.
I want to emphasise(sp?) again, the first single is not quite 100% representative if speaking about the whole album. It's more like a little 'oddball' so to speak. So, if you don't like the first single, I would still suggest to give it a listen, as not the whole album and all tracks are like 'Getting away with murder'
the title tracks has such terrible lyrics, i cringed when i heard them. take, for example, this little tidbit of lyrical mediocrity, "I drink my drink and I don't even want to/I think my thoughts when I don't even need to/I never look back cause I don't even want to/And I don't need to/Because I'm getting away with murder." awful!!!!!!! :upset:
[/QUOTE] And has anyone noticed how different they look in the video for that song? Wifebeaters, torn jeans and jet-black dyed hair? Sounds like Papa Roach are trying to look like Lostprophets :lol:[/QUOTE]
kinda like wannabe mexicans it sounds like. i havent seen the video but i dont want to see it anyway, im dissapointed with these guys ever since lovehatetragedy. as far as im concerned they can all go to hell with their crappy lyrics and such.
[QUOTE=Kif]The title track is the poorest single I've heard in a while for a harder rock band like Papa Roach. Which has put me off getting the album.
And has anyone noticed how different they look in the video for that song? Wifebeaters, torn jeans and jet-black dyed hair? Sounds like Papa Roach are trying to look like Lostprophets :lol:[/QUOTE]
i totally agree with you on them turning into total wusses, with their softer approach. what the hell happened to these guys? it just seemed to go downhill from lovehatetragedy, which indeed was a tragedy. and it sounds like theyre taking a "mexican" approach with their new video. i havent seen it yet, and i dont plan on it either. as far as im concerned, papa roach can go to hell with their poorly written lyrics and such. :evil: (the devil waiting for them in hell)
I heard the title track played directly after one of the singles from their first album. It's amazing how much they improved. The older song was 90% rap oriented while the new stuff was more blatantly rock/metal. I don't care for it but they're definitely getting better.