Review Summary: Fabled city, not such a fabled album
Classical Guitar - Check
Baritone voice - Check
Excellent music - Three quarters of the way there
Lyrics- Let Down.
Tom Morello, the famed guitarist of Rage against the Machine embarked on a folk solo career as his alter ego: The Nightwatchman. The First album was pretty dissapointing, meaningless lyrics, the same chord patterns and a voice that just went on and on and on and on...
You should get the picture.
This album features a backing band to help Morello in his solo Career musically, but his Lyrics are the same. For Example on the first track, 'The Fablede City', it mentions a wealthy powerplant of some sort moving, and the residents have to bite their tongues in silence. Then then the Chorus:
"I've seen the fabled city
It's streets are filled with gold,
but an iron fence runs around it,
and the iron gate is closed"
Bravo for the words Tom, but how do they tie in with the song? It lacks some sort of plot and after the first chorus, the songs seems to just lose its sense of meaning. Then 'Whatever it takes', this features eletric guitars (hurrah at last!) and a cowbell (wtf!?). It's all the same of dams bursting, rampards and the bridges being taken. Nothing different from the material from his last album.
'The King of hell' is apparently inspired from guantanamo bay, claiming that the devil is 'Not the king of hell' One of the few bearable songs on this album. Then 'Night Falls', a beautiful song for guitar, and piano. But the chorus just ruins the song. Apart from that, the song is good.
Onto another song 'The lights are on in Spider town'. This song has to be the most cliche ridden song I've come across with lines such as "Don't do what I do, just do as I say!" This song also proceeds about trying to capture a hill of some sort .Creativity seems to have been thrown out of the window. The song recovers by a swift classical guitar solo.
Midnight in the City of Destruction - Lyrics are meaningless, two chords, and a filler.
The album soon picks up with Saint Isabele with a jolly harmonica intro, and the lyrics actually MEAN SOMETHING! Then the bridge of god making a path for Saint Isabelle. A bit confusing, doesn't really need to be in the song but hey, it still works. Lazarus in Down begins with a soft intro, but a man who's baritone voice with Serj Tankian acutally work, with his ligh vioce chipping in every now and then, and backing up on the chorus. Gone like Rain sounds like it's being played on a mandolin, but it doesn't really guit the song that's ment to be dark.
So All I can say is - A fairly good album, lack of song structure along some lines, good electric guitar playing and a baritone vioce which is ok at first, but soon gets on your nerves after a while.
Reccomended tracks -
Whatever it Takes
Night Falls (except the chorus)
Lazurus on down