Mudvayne
The New Game


2.5
average

Review

by Josh Fountain CONTRIBUTOR (63 Reviews)
November 14th, 2008 | 37 replies | 5,224 views


Release Date: 2008 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The New Game marks the return of Mudvayne, and while the album is nothing we haven't heard before, is likely to please fans of the band's newer sound. Although, it must be said that the band is dangerously close to completely stagnating.

A band can invoke pure hate by the mere mention of its name. Whether the hate is founded or not, bias is always present thanks to endless genre labels. Mudvayne has always been lumped in the nu-metal category and for good reason. People can argue that LD 50 was somewhat math metal but that is very debatable. the subsequent albums since their debut have all been very much rooted in nu-metal, albeit in the upper echelon. Something has to be said for the band's ability to stay together for the ten years of existence, unlike many of their new metal contemporaries. The core has stuck together, even with the distractions of the fall of nu-metal and the terrible idea that was Hellyeah. This album, however seems very much like a rehashing of previous material and does nothing to make anyone wish for nu-metal to relinquish its "glory" days.

The band's bright spots, the bass and drumming, are still as good as ever. The bass lines of Ryan Martinie are as good as they have ever been and Matthew McDonough shows once again why he should be in a real metal band, where he could truly show off his talents. Greg Tribbet once again is serviceable, and keeps up the furious pace set by McDonough and Martinie. Only a couple of solos are heard on the album, none of which will amaze you. Many band's rhythm section is relegated to the background, with the bass almost inaudible, however Mudvayne learned early on that their rhythm section is the band's strength. As such, they are more featured than most in metal. Every song succeeds or fails due to the work of front man Chad Gray. His voice is unique and also alternately annoying and superb. When lightly singing, his voice is rather whiny, but not high pitched on the whole; it is more of a tinge in his singing style. His voice is better when he sings with more edge to his voice. His strength has always been in his ability to toe the singing and screaming line. His actual screaming is not varied and rather standard.

The album itself is hindered with very pedestrian songwriting and a tendency to fall into the old habits, in terms of their guitar parts and the overall sound of the album. It sounds too much like their previous album Lost and Found with not enough progression. There are few standout tracks as well, as the album tends to bleed together and differentiating between the songs when simply listening becomes hard. There are only small differences in the songs to let you know that the track has even changed. The usual verse chorus verse chorus bridge chorus is used on every song, and the songs themselves tend to hover around or just below the four minute mark, with the exceptions being “A New Game,” “A Cinderella Story,” and “Same Ol?”

Mudvayne stronger tracks are the heavier tracks. “Fish Out of Water” punches you in the face at the outset, with the other strong heavy tracks being the aforementioned “A New Game” and “We The People,” which is plagued by stupid lyrics. It also needs mentioning that the lyrics are fairly average throughout the album, not helping or hindering any songs save for a few spots; they are just there.

The rest of the album is fairly mid-paced with the exception being the ballad “Never Enough” which is surprisingly a stronger track on the album, yet has very misplaced screaming in the bridge. Chad Gray’s voice carries the same throughout, and keeps the album above most similar nu-metal ballads. There are no true bad tracks on the album, and there are also trace influences of metal core here and there, but you only notice them in passing. The strongest of the mid-paced songs, and best song on the album, is “Have it Your Way,” which is very much akin to “Happy?” off of Lost and Found both in catchy melodies and powerful vocals from Chad Gray. The one large gripe I have with the album is the presence of “Dull Boy,” which was on the live and demo album By the People, For the People. The band said that this song would not be on the album, which I was very pleased about as it is a terrible song, and it brings down the already average second half of the album. There is no way that a song left on the cutting room floor could not have beat this song out on the album, or the band even could have just made the album ten tracks. It is by far the worst song on the album and has no redeeming values to it

All in all, a fairly middle of the road album that will do nothing to turn away fans of Lost and Found and will continue to piss of people wishing of another LD 50. This is not a misstep for Mudvayne, but it is also not a step forward. The presence of strong tracks “Have it Your Way” and “A New Game” keep this album from being terribly mediocre. This album does nothing to change the band’s image or that of the now mostly dead nu-metal genre, but is likely to sell albums and put Mudvayne on the shortlist to headline Rockstar Mayhem next year.



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user ratings (462)
Chart.
2.5
average
other reviews of this album
Jom STAFF (1.5)
Unless this album is just an anomaly - a fluke, even - and not a harbinger of things to come, 'The N...

Jake C. Taylor (2)
The New Game shows that mundane-Mudvayne’s idea of ‘new’, is a second-rate one at best....


Comments:Add a Comment 
Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 14th 2008


7996 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

The stream is in the news feed, and I am happy I finally have a review of a new album, so people will actually read it. My approval will probably drop due to the faction of stupid Mudvayne fanboys (a small percentage of the fans they may be), but I am alright with that. Any and all constructive criticism is appreciated, as always.

Pebster49
November 14th 2008


2992 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

The album itself is hindered with very pedestrian songwriting and a tendency to fall into the old habits, in terms of their guitar parts and the overall sound of the album. It sounds too much like their previous album Lost and Found with not enough progression.


Basically sums it up right there, good review

mynameischan
Staff Reviewer
November 14th 2008


17920 Comments


nice, i wonder what jom is gonna rate it

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 14th 2008


7996 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Probably shit because it is nothing like LD 50 in any way.

badtaste
November 14th 2008


824 Comments


Very nice review.

I gave the first song a listen, but couldn't be bothered for the rest.

PayneTiger777
November 14th 2008


4391 Comments


Mudvayne keeps getting worse and worse as they make new albums.

Auldy
November 14th 2008


351 Comments


oh that last line of the summary...nailed it!

"Although, it must be said that the band is dangerously close to completely stagnating"

very well reviewed sir! POS!This Message Edited On 11.14.08

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 14th 2008


7996 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Why thank you very much, everyone who has pos'd. This album will most definitely drop in rating later because I highly doubt the best songs on this album have any staying power whatsoever.

taylormemer
November 14th 2008


4917 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

I'll wait for your review to go off the front page before I submit mine.

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 14th 2008


7996 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

sounds like a plan to me

Auldy
November 14th 2008


351 Comments


its such a shame, the started off so good....then just ran out of fresh ideas

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 14th 2008


7996 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

They fell too far into the trap that is commercial sensibility.This Message Edited On 11.14.08

taylormemer
November 14th 2008


4917 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

It's more close to the fact that it's new, then suddenly realising that they have nothing else to actually say.

jimay333
November 14th 2008


433 Comments


Favorite band as a kid... "World So Cold" anyone?
Don't think I'll be listening to this one though. Pretty dece review though.

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 14th 2008


7996 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Back in the day I was obsessed with Not Falling.

fireaboveicebelow
November 14th 2008


6837 Comments


so this band is basically useless now you're saying?

asaf
November 14th 2008


885 Comments


"His voice is unique and also alternately annoying and superb. "

when stressing an alternate, annoying and superb are their own opposites.

I would listen to Shuvel any day before exploring new Mudvayne.

Zippermouth
November 14th 2008


1305 Comments


The only song that these people ever did a decent job with was "Determined." can't say I'm a fan...

TheDistantFuture
November 14th 2008


200 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Totally agree. Fish out of Water is pretty awesome though.

Burn2Burn
November 14th 2008


2378 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Fish Out Of Water and A New Game are they only really unique songs, the rest is either average or god awful. I wish they'd just try harder, everything they do now seems lazy, even their live performances.This Message Edited On 11.14.08



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