P.O.D.
When Angels and Serpents Dance


3.5
great

Review

by Jason USER (8 Reviews)
May 17th, 2008 | 42 replies


Release Date: 2008 | Tracklist


Most of us will be familiar with PODs two big hits “Alive” and “Youth of the Nation” which brought mass mainstream success to the band, getting huge amounts of airplay on the radio. Whether it be nu-metal being the fad at the time or the singles being released at “appropriate” times in relation to certain real life events, ‘Satellite’ still went triple platinum.

Most of us will also agree that ‘Satellite’ is easily their best album to date and they have struggled to get over a bar that was raised so high. Post-Satellite period, with a few bright spots such as the single “Goodbye For Now” and “Roots On Stereo” on their previous album, they sounded very uninspired.

Upon hearing POD were back in the studio working on a new album, my hopes were not very high. The band also welcomed back original guitarist Marcos Curiel at the expense of Jason Truby which was the right thing to do as you will see or hear for yourself. They would have to do something special to live up to a rather ambitious name for an album, ‘When Angels and Serpents Dance’.

Opener and lead single Addicted greets you with a meaty opening riff before leading into a catchy chorus. The song also happens to be the heaviest on the album and you may form misconceptions at this point. Sonny alternates between singing and semi-rapping/preaching going on about various negative events in life. The breakdown is very good with an original solo leading up to it, something you rarely find on their previous albums. Nothing special and out of the ordinary still.

Condescending which they have already been playing during live shows prior to this album being released is one of the better tracks on this CD. A chunky heavily distorted starts things off before an extremely catch riff comes along any the vocals pour out. Sonny’s singing is nothing special but he gets the job done.

It Can’t Rain Everyday deals with the aftermath of a miscarriage. From the start you can tell this song is going to be different from anything POD have attempted before.
“Even though you feel alone,
It can’t rain everyday, it don’t rain everyday
It don’t rain forever,
Your sunshine may be gone but I know
It can’t rain everyday, it don’t rain everyday”

Sonny gives an excellent vocal performance on this album showing he can actually sing “normally”. Often at times during the song he sounds very reminiscent to Anthony Kiedis during the Californication era. Despite the chorus sounding rather cheesy, it still delivers. Curiel delivers some excellent, laid back and cool lead guitar on this one which blends in perfectly. The drums and bass despite being simple as always are quite groovy and move well with the song. If you are going to listen to only one song from the album, this better be the one.

Kaliforn-Eye-a is a disaster. I had hopes for a good song upon when I saw that Mike Muir from Suicidal Tendencies lent his vocals. Sonny really does sound uninspired and bored here. They tried to combine elements of punk, rap and rock here and there which may sound interesting but you get a complete mess. The breakdown is terrible with some equally bad frantic vocals from Mike after. Avoid this one.

God Forbid and the self-titled track, two of the more heavier songs on the CD are just more filler which ruin the flow considerably. Sonny again sounds uninspired and bored while Curiel plays some heavily recycled drop-D tuned riffs. He delivers another interesting solo on the latter but that alone cannot make a good track.

Roman Empire is a pointless 2:42 instrumental which left me a bit puzzled. Curiel did deliver an excellent Spanish sounding solo 1:45 minutes which could have brought a smile to Carlos Santana himself. The album does finish on a good note though. Tell My Why has some relaxing acoustic guitars and string instruments in the background which are very well executed. Sonny gives some really good and meaningful vocals and lyrics here too which don’t sound forced at all.

“The hate in your eyes
The lies in your tongue
A hand that kills the innocence
So quick to do wrong
The belly is full while we fight for what remains
The rich become richer while
The poor become slaves”

Definitely a lot that can be related to with lines like that. Listen to this one. Curiel gets another chance to shine on the closing track Rise Against playing some very original hooks and riffs. Traa’s bass is actually quite good here and he plays some interesting bass lines mid way through.

Overall? I have to give them credit for trying something different and exploring several other areas. Songs like “It Can’t Rain Everyday” and “Tell Me Why” definitely come off well while others like “Kaliforn-Eye-A” just don’t make it. Curiel has a huge part to play in this album. His Spanish influenced riffs and solos are extremely refreshing and a welcome break from the heavily recycled nu-metal riffs in their past 4 albums. You could say it’s a sign of them selling out but songs like “Addicted” and “Condescending” ensure they keep some of their identity intact.

Overall rating: 3.75/5

Comments & criticism most welcome. :)



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user ratings (175)
Chart.
2.8
good
other reviews of this album
Gerardo Cruz (2.5)
When Angels and Serpents Dance gives the impression of an incomplete album with some very good track...


Comments:Add a Comment 
IAmInsect
April 9th 2008


3800 Comments


Good review. Sounds like this album is more of the same. No thanks.

Mirror.Circuit
April 9th 2008


223 Comments


Good review,although Wuv is the drummer, not the bassist.

gaber01
April 9th 2008


112 Comments


Good review, except P.O.D. is a terrible band.

And those lyrics you quoted are pretty damn cliche.

DaveBum69
April 9th 2008


699 Comments


I remember back in the day my mom bought satelite and she said aside from the singles it sucked, i listened to a little of this and not being a fan, it ok i suppose, and did sonny cut his hair

BroRape
April 9th 2008


803 Comments


i can't believe i used to like p.o.d. i was like 10, but still. ew.

IAmInsect
April 9th 2008


3800 Comments


haha one time i rapped to southtown for a church

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
April 9th 2008


15737 Comments


I once rocked out to DC Talk. truth.

As for POD, I have Satellite somewhere and it ruled my life when I was 9 or 10, so they get props for that.

Digging: Ricky Eat Acid - Three Love Songs

IAmInsect
April 9th 2008


3800 Comments


dc talk still rules. well jesus freak and supernatural rule.

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
April 9th 2008


15737 Comments


oh btw add the tracklist, reviewer.

botb
April 9th 2008


9674 Comments


I've heard this is actually really awesome. Satellite was an epic record when I was younger, still listen to a couple of the tracks every now and then. I'll be checking this out.

Pebster49
April 9th 2008


2992 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

I listened to some songs from this, it sounds really bad.

IAmInsect
April 9th 2008


3800 Comments


i don't get how everyone says satellite was the best. if anything it was their second worst, second to brown. southtown was their best album by far and definately most consistent one imo. it's also the only one i could ever listen to now.

Pebster49
April 9th 2008


2992 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Satelliete had like three good songs...thats three more than any other cd they put out.

Wizard
April 9th 2008


19403 Comments


Fundemental Elements of Southtown was the only album I bothered checking out by these guys. This sounds really gay.


Ok review. Did the job sufficiently enough. Keep working on your writing and I'm sure you will become better in time. This Message Edited On 04.09.08

Digging: Khonsu - Traveller

BallsToTheWall
April 9th 2008


44373 Comments


I didn't like addicted so much off of myspace but it's weird to see Sonny without dreads. Harkening back to his blonde days. Satellite ruled and Southtown and Boom are good car jams. Decent review too.

Digging: Pharmakon - Abandon

Wizard
April 9th 2008


19403 Comments


Glad to see someone else appreciated nu-metal like I did back in the day.

IAmInsect
April 9th 2008


3800 Comments


dude most people into metal were into nu metal at one point. in high school, i used to randomly shout "LIMP BIZKIT" accompanied by some devil horns.

BallsToTheWall
April 9th 2008


44373 Comments


I'm probaly the most outspoken nu metaller on the site. Spineshank, Nothingface,Sevendust, Coal Chamber, it's all good to me. I have no shame in listening to any of it to this day. I'll probaly torrent this but the album isn't looking good so far from what i've heard previously.

Merkaba33
April 9th 2008


702 Comments


yeah ive grown out of the nu-metal rap thing but i still think marcos is a great guitarist. that's the only reason i might check this out

Jom
Staff Reviewer
April 9th 2008


2675 Comments


Some of the mySpace tracks sounded pretty cool, but some of the songs were really bad. That pretty much describes my listening relationship with POD.
Good review, man.



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