is Staind's second album, but the first on a major label. Tormented
being the first, with it's much heavier riffs and vocals and quite controversial cover art. Staind was discovered in the late 90's opening for Limp Bizkit. Fred was so offended by the artwork to their first album that he threw a fit and tried to have them thrown off the bill. He failed, and stood on the side of the stage to see their show. Fred liked it so much, he decided to co-produce their major label debut. And so Dysfunction
After a five second fade in, Suffocate
kicks into nu-metal heavy riff mode. Then in come the drums and bass. The guitar goes away and we're left with bass 'n drums while Aaron sings over top as the guitar juts in and out as it sees fit. "Leave me here and I'll die/Just kick me in the face/All alone and crying/I suffocate" marks the chorus with some depressing type lyrics you'll hear often throughout the songs here. In the middle is a sort of break where things lighten up a little bit (in music, not lyrics). Back to the chorus again and then it's on to the next track.
with a return to the chunky nu-metal riff after a very short intro. It lightens up a bit in the verse then gets a little heavier in the chorus. Typical Aaron lyrics here. "Such a cancer on the face of everything that's beautiful/I wish that this would just go" is chorus material. The middle features a slow break, with more depressing lyrics like "I'm water while you drown/You're lifted while I'm down." Chorus, then things get heavier and Aaron sort of shouts at me to just go. What I did to deserve that, I don't know.
"I hear you talk about your family life/I wish I knew just what that means" signals the start of the next song, Me
. I fairly enjoy this track, despite it's rather depressing lyrics (are we sensing a trend, here?). This song features some good simple drum work by Mr. Wysocki. Throughout, Aaron speaks of how he's an addict and pathetic. This one goes out with the same line as when it came in. Raw
is next, and judging from the beginning, would be one of the heaviest. In some parts, this is true. It starts with four cymbal strikes and a nice screaming of "Raw" from Mr. Lewis. Then heavy riffing. The verse is quite slower and not as heavy. The chorus, however, is a different matter. Going back to the heavy intro part, but then slowing down for Aaron's slightly whining vocals. There's a break, and another scream with some different heavy riffing. Chorus, heavy riffing, screams, end.
opens with a memorable bassline and steady hat-strokes. This is a remake of a song of the same name from Tormented
. "You take away/I feel the same" leads into the heavy riffing. Then the verse slows down a bit with bass 'n drums behind Mr. Lewis. It goes back the first heavy riff for a bit and Aaron gets slightly angrier then off into the chorus of "You can't feel my anger/You can't feel my pain/You can't feel my torment drivin' me insane...". Some more verse/heavy riff/chorus, then it breaks down into Aaron's repeating of Mudshovel and then slows down into what began the song. After a while of that it goes back into the chorus with slightly angrier vocals this time. More repeating of the Mudshovel line ends the song. Tom hits bring the beginning of Home
, then it goes into a slower riff which is sort of a break from the heavy riffing of Mudshovel. A slow verse is present here, which isn't much surprise. This one contains fairly good lyrics. The chorus contains "I'm afraid to be alone/Afraid you'll leave me when I'm gone/I'm afraid to come back home." The next verse opens with "Another sleepless night again/Hotel room's my only friend and friends like that just don't add up." Chorus, then here comes the break. After slowing down for a little bit, it heavies up a little with some nice riffing thanks to Mr. Mushok. Back to the chorus, where Aaron's voice is slightly whinier than before. In the middle of this one, it breaks off and goes lighter with the tapping of a ride cymbal and light strumming.
More ride cymbal and light crashes with some guitar open A Flat
. Then the guitar goes away leaving the cymbals which leads into a really chunky riff. One of my favorites of the album, here. This riff changes a little then continues throughout the verse. Good work from Wysocki and Mushok throughout this one. After some verses, theres a return to the first chunky riff and Aaron's "All the demons in my head won't leave/I know, I can hear them/All the sacrifices made for nothin'..." Now here comes the slow break which features "I hate myself/And I hate my face/And I hate my world/And I hate my ways." He repeats "And I" a few times, then screams in nu-metal fashion accompanied with a nice, heavy riff. "I'm not okay" is screamed out a couple times, then back to normal vocal mode with "I'm okay" repeated. Another verse, then chorus.
is next, which is probably the second most famous song of Dysfunction
(Mudshovel would seem to be first). This is a heavy one, with a chunky riff with some guitar whining in there. "I'm so lonely/You're so beautiful/Not the only/One that's pitiful" is a nice, depressing verse. That leads into a slightly heavier part, followed by the much more mellow chorus. "Late at night I can hear your voices/Talkin' shit about all my choices" spits Mr. Lewis as it goes into the chorus. Here's the break. It starts with just bass, then builds with drums and vocals until it reaches a climax with Aaron screaming "Everything fall apart! Everything." Then back so mellow chorus mode for one last hurrah.
Some quick drum work opens Spleen
, which then goes into a nice riff, courtesy of Mike. Things change a bit, then go into another heavy moment with the screaming of "Can't breath/Shut up!" Then a nice whiny moment which leads into more heavy riffing. A return to angry mode, then back to the whiny mode. This repeats a few times with varying lyrics each time. Things now slow down quite a bit, with Aaron almost whispering "Don't understand it/You're killing this planet/The scabs on her face, it's a fucking disgrace/I blame you." Things abruptly speed up with the repeating of "I blame you." Heavy mode with screaming comes again, now. That would seem like it for this album. But wait, there's more!
After roughly 12 minutes of silence following the last song comes what sounds like someone walking into a bathroom and jiggling the toilet handle. Then walking around some more and lighting a cigarette and lastly drinkin' some form of beverage (presumably while on the can). An acoustic guitar comes in with nice vocals from Mr. Lewis, although they're kind of echo-y (possibly from singing in the bathroom). "I'm left here with nothing/Nothing to live for/But you/It's not easy to hide/All this damage inside/I'll carry it with me/Until I'm not alive" is a good lyrical moment. This song contains good lyrics throughout, accompanied by nothing more than a guitar of the acoustic variety. Another verse, and depressing chorus followed by some guitar strummin' close the track and the album.
Overall, this is a decent album, especially coming from the nu-metal genre. There's usually good vocals throughout, and Mushok's chunky riffs are always good. Give it a listen, you might find something you like.
(+)Some good chunky riffing throughout
(+)Aaron's vocals are usually fairly good
(+)If you're depressed, then you'd probably enjoy this
(-)The vocals get a little whiny at times
(-)Lyrics are depressing and negative
(-)At around 40 minutes, (excluding silence) it's pretty short
(?)Why'd you sing on the can, Aaron? Is it because you're so depressed?
1. Suffocate -3:16 (All songs written by Staind)
2. Just Go -4:50
3. Me -4:36
4. Raw -4:09
5. Mudshovel -4:41
6. Home -4:05
7. A Flat -4:59
8. Crawl -4:29
9. Spleen -21:01