Chevelle would be absolute monsters if you got into a fight with them. Well let me clarify that a bit; if you’re were still in high school (equivalence to mainstream radio) and you we’re stuck in a heated debate (equivalence to a fight) on whether the radio was still worth your listening time, Chevelle would absolutely put all inhibitions to shame with this release as they come storming into your speakers like never before. Ladies and gentlemen, to be blunt, this is the way Chevelle should
sound, as the trio of brothers (Dean being the half brother) come very close to releasing their magnum opus.
Right off the bat I’ll tell you that only a handful of tracks in the boys’ discography can match what they’ve released on this album, save for Jars
which was not only a poor choice for a first single, but it shouldn’t haven even been included in the finished product. For those of you awaiting your answers to classics like Mia
, and The Red
look no further as Shameful Metaphors
is more than ready to be placeholder as the bands best song to date. Pete croons past the slithering intro riff only to catapult into a tug-o-war between him and the instruments, as it balances the fine line of melodic/heavy like never before. The lyrics are once again to only heighten the experience as we hear Pete for the first time is being a little more intuitive of himself singing out, “So why then, Has all my life made no sound, I fear your eyes closing, Even now…
Also continuing with the trends, the band produces yet another stellar album opener with Sleep Apnea
kludging its way in with its clunky guitar riffs and (FINALLY) the return of the double bass. You’ll also notice that Pete sounds as comfortable as ever delivering some of his best lines ever in the erupting chorus, “I gasp and hold my breath, These needs have chained so deep, To face you all, Let’s say I’ve been awake forever…
”. What makes this song work and with most others though are the little things which shows the true progression of the band as they present the marching drone of the drum in the verse, and a stifled guitar only to heighten the strength in Pete’s voice. Mexican Sun
not only employs the best riff of the album, but also its greatest melodic moments with Pete storming in with his eccentric voice to deliver the ascending intro right into some beautiful harmonies for the verse.
I’d hate to call this a return to form for the band as Vena Sera
didn’t arrive to disappointment, but admittedly it was a detour from their core sound. I’m happy to announce that Chevelle have recaptured that aura of a hard edge sound that pushes the boundaries of friendly melody most notably on A New Momentum
with it’s dissonant intro guiding the way for its voided aesthetic verse. The drums are also at their strongest here as Sam continues to improve his abilities, though nothing too striking like the beautiful Saferwaters
, but his role on this disc is simply the stabilizer as all his efforts complete the cohesiveness of the album.
There’s something on this disc for fans of every release by the boy’s as infatuates of Point #1
days will certainly welcome tracks like Letter From A Thief
which take full use of its recording process sounding imminently raw and showcasing the bands talent as whole instead of different instrumental aspects like previous effort Vena Sera
. Those who enjoyed This Type of Thinking
need not be worried that the band regressed into a less production enthused release as songs like Roswell’s Spell
and A New Momentum
offer some of the heaviest and intricate moments on the disc with their hammering riffs and Pete exerting an ample force for his voice like never before. Although I forewarn those who desire the malicious screaming as the band reveal an understanding that there’s more to aggression than blatant vocal breakers. Fans of old can certainly recall the days where Pete elevated his voice into a pitched yell at any moment; this time around things have changed a bit.
You can definitely feel the emotion stemming for every word Pete evocates as his relationship with the mic has never sounded so surreal - a true plus. Instead of deviating that fine line into a scream, we’re greeted with soaring highs and subtle lines of “Leave you a pen, Write it down, Oh you know what you can do with it
” as he lets the instruments do most of the pounding for him, and boy does it work most exclusively on tracks like Mexican Sun
. But its not all about delivering your hostility on a platter of rampant aggressive tones, as one of the more urgent tracks comes from the acoustic Highland’s Apparition
. Finally a worthy adversary of Bend the Bracket
all we get is Pete and his guitar as he eschews lines “Tell us we are demented, watch as our attention span will hold so fast, and then goes up in smoke…
”, a suffice victory in the department of vocals everything about this track is perfect from its cryptic acoustic feel to the angry undertone in Pete’s voice.
Last, but certainly not least fans of Wonder What’s Next
rejoice as Fell Into Your Shoes
reveries all that I Get It
wishes it could be with its dueling guitar work, and feverish chorus layered with the eeriness that is Comfortable Liar
. The song begs for subsequent listens as it slowly churns its way in with its slick bass licks and haunting chimes setting the mood for the rest of the song as it crawls its way around not one but TWO
guitar solos. Let’s just take a moment for those of us who know Chevelle to understand how astonishing that is to hear… Ok moving on.
All in all, a fantastic cd to add to the bands catalogue. The only unfortunate thing to note is how this will certainly signify another nail into mainstream radios coffin, as they sink to all new depths boasting around the same tired formulas of other more “appealing” bands. In what has truly been a extraordinary year for music, from rebirths of great acts like Blink-182
releasing an album of true return to form. Chevelle are able to ellipse themselves yet again with This Circus
closing on one of the more solid tracks instrumentally with its psychedelic-ish riff and dance enthused drum beat. The boys walk out on an astounding note as almost to say, “We’ll be back…” and I for one without a doubt will be waiting.
Track Recommendations Include: Fell Into Your Shoes
, Sleep Apnea
, This Circus
, A New Momentum