Adrenaline Mob
Omerta


3.0
good

Review

by Palimpsest USER (2 Reviews)
March 15th, 2012 | 31 replies | 5,560 views


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Well, this was a surprise.

7 of 7 thought this review was well written

Like any good prog fan, I was somewhat disturbed by the formation of Adrenaline Mob. It seemed like a regression on all fronts to have Mike Portnoy and Russell Allen playing in a band with more similarities to Black Label Society than to Dream Theater or Symphony X. Then came the horribly produced Adrenaline Mob EP with the embarrassing "Psychosane" and I was more than prepared to hate the band's next offering. Omerta has all the trappings of a train wreck. A disgraced drummer. A generic, dated style. "Mobster" posturing. Even Nickelback-esque club pandering in the form of 'Feelin' Me.' The ironically titled closer seems like the icing on the cake. But for all the clichés and superficialities, I can't deny that this is a great album, filled with strong hooks and a fun atmosphere that's hard to find in an age where metal purveys little more than doom and darkness.

If you're looking for sophisticated, cerebral prog, this is probably not for you. I've found, however, that the likability of Omerta hinges just as much on guitarist Mike Orlando as it does on the overall style and genre. Orlando's queazy tone and Zakk Wylde meets Eddie Van Halen shred hysterics aren't for everyone. But I, for one, like the intensity of his solos and think that his riffs on tracks like Undaunted, Indifferent, and Believe Me are great. Having listened to his solo albums, though, I'll concede that he didn't really bring everything to the table for Omerta. His colorful influences from Joe Satriani, Al Di Meola, and New Age are conspicuously absent, and this shows in the Duran Duran cover (Come Undone) which eschews the atmospheric quality of the original in favor of a generic, nu-metal backdrop. Orlando takes unfortunate cues from nu-metal in his production as well. Though a significant improvement from the EP, the bass is inaudible at points, and the waveforms rather dynamic-less and clipped; only the intros to Undaunted, All On The Line, Hit The Wall, and Angel Sky yield dips in loudness.

Portnoy, like Orlando, is a mixed bag. He does a relatively good job of holding down the fort, but opted for drum triggers that make those on Images And Words seem organic by comparison. Everything is even, and everything falls sightly behind the beat. Psychosane suffers the most, but this a nuisance throughout the entire record. The undoubted MVP of Omerta is Russell Allen, whose performance builds upon the gruff vocal style of the past two Symphony X records. It's easy to see, given his impressive range and tone, why he's one of the most consistently lauded and respected singers in the history of metal. Even the cheesy lyrics leave him 'undaunted,' and his duet with Lzzy Hale is something to behold.

I won't comment too much on the actual songwriting, because I, even as someone who enjoys the record, will admit that it's formulaic. You begin with a riff (or a pick slide; Mike Orlando loves those pick slides), then jump into a typical verse, chorus, bridge style format. No surprises here, folks. The only track with even a pinch of progressive influence is Hit The Wall, which segues into a slow, sludgy outro similar to Dream Theater's The Dark Eternal Night. The ballads All On The Line and Angel Sky also provide a change of pace from the constant chugging. The latter would have to be my favorite track on the album, featuring a beautiful chorus and some tasteful guitar harmonies from Orlando. Opposite the spectrum of quality is Down To The Floor, which sounds like a straight rip from Nickelback's Dark Horse album. Russell singing "I'm ready to explode" never fails to crack me up.

But in the end, the fun quality proves to be Omerta's redeeming value. I would actually draw parallels to the new Van Halen album, in that, while you get some cheesy lyrics like "stay frosty" and "mousewife to momshell," you get an enjoyable, hook-laden affair that most (unpretentious) fans of hard rock and heavy metal will enjoy. The clichés prevent it from being everything it could have been, but you'll be hard-pressed to find another 2012 metal release that rocks this hard.


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Comments:Add a Comment 
NeutralThunder12
March 15th 2012



8742 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

im all for rock n roll but this is mostly unmemorable and kinda flat, fuck portnoy

KjSwantko
March 15th 2012



8717 Comments


Album is pretty whack, just look at the cover and track listing.

Nice review though, Pos.

Palimpsest
March 15th 2012



77 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

It's one of those albums that actually crosses over into the "so bad, it's good" territory. It's kind of a guilty pleasure.

zxlkho
March 15th 2012



3424 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

Mike Portnoy is a piece of shit and this album is awful.

botb
March 15th 2012



9280 Comments


stuck mojo guy is such a fag ugh

Digging: Cult Leader - Nothing For Us Here

Palimpsest
March 15th 2012



77 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I forget his name. Is it Rich Ward? He wasn't involved in this at all. He left the band a few months ago.

glezz
March 15th 2012



235 Comments


Jeeezis, didn't Drowning Pool do this album 12 years ago. This sucks. Portnoy is not only over-rated, he makes some truly horrible artistic decisions. But then, he is a machine anyways.


KjSwantko
March 15th 2012



8717 Comments


Portnoy's great at coming up with awesome fills and grooves in the prog sense, he should just stick to that. I've always hated the sound of his snare though

halloway
March 15th 2012



684 Comments


Worst album art & logo in a long time... yikes.

asaf
March 15th 2012



873 Comments


"im all for rock n roll but this is mostly unmemorable and kinda flat, fuck portnoy"

im right there with ya

Xenophanes
Emeritus
March 16th 2012



10553 Comments


That cover screams cheese

Digging: Saintseneca - Dark Arc

iFghtffyrdmns
March 16th 2012



7047 Comments


so fucking lost

Xenophanes
Emeritus
March 16th 2012



10553 Comments


What?

AsoTamaki
March 16th 2012



2525 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

FREIGHT TRAIN ROLLIN'
YA KEEP ON ROLLIN'
FREIGHT TRAIN ROLLIN'
ALL
NIGHT

m/

steventon
March 16th 2012



152 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

good review, i pretty much agree. its far from great or anything worth going out of your way for, but it's mostly inoffensive mainstream-y rock. Russell's voice is really strong even though most of the instrumentation is pretty generic. The opener is worth a listen atleast just for the chorus. The rest is OK, but "Down To The Floor" is pretty terrible.

combustion07
March 16th 2012



5303 Comments


Dream Theater sucked anyway. Yay Adrenaline Mob!

seneca89
March 16th 2012



29 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Album rocks. It's not as technical obviously as bands like Dream Theater, but it is a fun listen. Lighten up people

fish.
Contributing Reviewer
March 16th 2012



20199 Comments


well we can tell who wrote Dream Theater's music then...

everything about this album seems so tacky. I can't think of any drummer who's gone on to be successful outside of the band they originally got big in (apart from Dave Grohl)


Digging: YG - My Krazy Life

peartnoy
March 16th 2012



1123 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

The ex-drummer from Between The Buried And Me is now with Emmure....

Even if Emmure suck they're still successful :P

Parallels
March 16th 2012



6640 Comments


I am desperately trying to avoid this after what I heard on their EP.



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