Sully Erna
Avalon


4.0
excellent

Review

by Peter K. Mark USER (17 Reviews)
September 21st, 2010 | 24 replies | 12,893 views


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A different side of Sully Erna that takes you on a musical journey of oriental landscapes.

6 of 6 thought this review was well written

It's always interesting to hear what a vocalist from a well-known band can achieve outside of his comfort zone. Up to this point, Godsmack have released record after record after record, each full of potential. While their signature sound consists mainly of tribal music mixed with grunge-influenced sounds and Metallica-styled riffs, Godsmack have never truly emphasized on taking their sound anywhere special. If anything, their albums were reaching high, but somehow got pushed down a cliff by the influence of the mainstream (obvious exception: "Faceless"). "The Oracle" was a clear indication that the band's focus was on writing simple songs, reminiscent of their previous material. A safe process indeed, which Godsmack have done well throughout their career. However, it was time for a change.

Sully Erna's debut takes the tribal elements from Godsmack, and successfully builds an entire album around that approach in the form of a musical journey. If you're longing to hear complex riffs or heavy drums, stop here. Avalon is exactly the opposite, and at the same time the synonym of a typical Godsmack album. If that doesn't make sense to you, listen to "Sinner's Prayer", and you will be bound to notice elements from "Voodoo" and "Serenity", while breathing a fresh air of experimentation with different oriental sounds. That vibe is cleverly maintained throughout the album, with acoustic guitars and tribal drumming techniques playing dominant roles. "7 Years" seems to be the only song constructed slightly differently, with a few guitar solos and interesting riffs accompanying guest vocalist, Lisa Guyer. Guyer also shares her mesmerizing voice with the audience in the almost stripped "My Light", a definite highlight of "Avalon".

In terms of instrumentation, "Avalon" displays a vast diversity of acoustic guitars, pianos, acoustic beats, distorted guitars, banjos, pipes, strings, synths and many other. While the concept of maintaining an oriental vibe is highly noticeable, songs like "Until Then..." demonstrate that Sully Erna is not afraid of showing slightly different sides of himself every now and then. Accompanying the complex instrumentations are the brilliant lyrics, which focus on much more than just Sully Erna's feelings, as "Eyes of a Child" highlights the fragility of life and death situations ["Hear the children cry, when one by one they die, ph, Jesus Christ can you help them?"].

The charm of this album is definitely the easy listening it offers. It is not a record you need to constantly chew on until you feel the taste, it just grabs you instantly. If you're looking for head banging riffs and complex solos, you will undoubtedly be disappointed. But if you're longing to hear an artist create something unexpected, that's intense, easy on the ears, and a fun listen, go get "Avalon". It is high time Sully Erna gets respect and credit for his amazing work.



Recent reviews by this author
Rise Against The Black MarketMastodon Once More 'Round the Sun
Linkin Park The Hunting PartyPalms Palms
Kanye West YeezusAlice in Chains Black Gives Way to Blue
user ratings (72)
Chart.
4
excellent
other reviews of this album
gordodustin (3.5)
Sully thinks outside the box, and does things that expand beyond his well known "Godsmack" style....


Comments:Add a Comment 
Maniac!
September 21st 2010



26250 Comments


Good review, pos'd. I have a hard time believing this is good though.

sexpoi
September 21st 2010



599 Comments


^^^same here

FCY
September 21st 2010



206 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks. Well, depends if you dig the whole oriental/tribal vibe of Sinner's Prayer, because that's pretty much how the album sounds like. It's different and much more focused than any Godsmack album.

Rugter32
September 21st 2010



754 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

So this is more consistent than most of the stuff he's done with Godsmack? Should check out, that I should.

FCY
September 21st 2010



206 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

^Yes, much more consistent. Godsmack were on auto-pilot mode for the past 4 years basically. But this...This is simply brilliant. It might sound cheesy, but I've always waited for someone to make an album like this.

Apollo
September 21st 2010



10290 Comments


wait, this is good?

very well written review though, pos'd

FCY
September 21st 2010



206 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

@Apollo: Thanks. Yeah, it's pretty damn solid. Definitely worth checking out.

Counterfeit
September 21st 2010



17819 Comments


i dont trust u

MasBarHigeuoris21
September 21st 2010



1558 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Believe it folks, this album is really that good. This may seem surprising considering the last two Godsmack albums but Peter K. Mark does not lie. Most people who listen to this will be blown away.

Edner
September 25th 2010



4 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Pleasantly surprising. Used to be huge Godsmack fan, but got burned out on them after Faceless and their last two albums I haven't even bothered picking up. I was completely expecting a low quality radio rock record from Sully's solo project, but was completely surprised to find that the album was actually quite decent. Pianos, cellos, acoustic guitars, hand drums, keyboards/synths, and female vocals help make this record fairly proggy in parts which is a great thing in my opinion.

zombiMessiah
October 22nd 2010



59 Comments


i love this album. i couldnt agree more with this review. im as much a fan of suly's voice as i am godsmack and i knew this wouldnt be headbanger. but yet im still fing myself listening to songs like 'until then...' over and over.

fr33convict
October 22nd 2010



11687 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I've been meaning to check this out.

Jakeitwasaghost
October 22nd 2010



767 Comments


The review - Extremely well written.
The album - Ew.

Counterfeit
December 25th 2010



17819 Comments


still not trustin u

Strider
December 25th 2010



4598 Comments


this sounds great. I might even check out some Godsmack, they sound interesting.

FromDaHood
Contributing Reviewer
January 6th 2011



9033 Comments


This can't be for real

Rugter32
January 8th 2011



754 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is indeed pretty awesome

AirRaid
July 29th 2011



6 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I've had this for several months now and I'm still amazed at how unreal this is.

KyokushinMaster
April 17th 2012



182 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Very good album check it out my favorite is 7 years

Urieal
February 26th 2013



8 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Can't help but feel my like of this album is because of its contrast to Godsmack. Erna shows he has some real talent. The vocals are his, which, IMO, is the weakest part of the album. I'd love to hear him stretch it more.

All in all, I like the album. Enough where it's one of the 6 discs in my changer (2002 BMW...doesn't like MP3s and I don't feel like paying ridiculous amounts to convert it...and all the head units make the dash look ugly...so..)



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy