Review Summary: There's a reason a skull is on this album cover...4 of 9 thought this review was well written
Wow. That is all I have to say about The Connection, the latest drivel Papa Roach has churned out. After listening to this album, it is apparent to me that the same energy and passion that made earlier songs such as 'Last Resort', 'Lifeline', 'Getting Away with Murder' and 'Scars' so popular has vanished in the same way Papa Roach's overall relevance as a band has. Papa Roach has auctioned off their trademark hip-hop/nu-metal sound for a clichéd and stagnant pop metal hybrid. I had high expectations for this album to be emotionally charged and inspiring, especially after the revelation that frontman Jacoby Shaddix was suicidal during the recording process, a trait that often lends itself well to rock albums. But instead of feeding off of his demons, Shaddix instead seems to allow them to subjugate him, the result being a bland, boring and overall painful album to listen to.
The album kicks off with the instrumental piece 'Engage' a piece so short and lacking in any relevance one wonders why they didn't simply combine this track and 'Still Swingin'', the album's lead single. The reason contemporary rock bands include instrumental lead tracks is to create ambience which, in effect, superscores the upcoming music, however, this attempt at such a device is just mediocre. Did they really lack the ingenuity and innovation to make this song longer than 51 seconds? Granted, such songs are short, but this is ridiculous. The next song is 'Still Swingin'", a tacky power ballad that attempts, and fails, at combining elements of rock and dubstep. Doing such a thing is tantamount to mixing water and oil, as a hot mess is also the only result of this experimentation. Other than that, 'Still Swingin'' is a tolerable track and an acceptable choice for the album's lead single. 'Where Did the Angels Go?' follows and a more appropriate name for this song is 'Where Did the Composer Go?', as the track consists of the same tedious riff that permeates mainstream rock repeated again and again and again to the point that I was overjoyed that it was one of the album's shorter tunes, and I use the word tune loosely. The fourth track 'Silence is the Enemy' is the only gem this album has to offer, as it provides an atmosphere of disgust and loathing that has Papa Roach fans have clung to since 'Infest'. Another passable track is 'Give Me Back my Life', a song that is expected to be on any mainstream rock album, attacking an unseen phantom of the listener's nightmare. Other than that, the album is relatively unremarkable and you may find yourself wanting to demolish furniture if you survive the entire album, which lasts a hair over 40 minutes but manages to take years off listener's lives. There is no need for me to review the rest of the album as in the same manner as the movie Battleship, one doesn't need to see it in its entireity to know it sucks.