Stone Sour
House of Gold and Bones - Part 2


4.5
superb

Review

by Amber Asyylum USER (12 Reviews)
April 3rd, 2013 | 31 replies | 7,674 views


Release Date: 04/09/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Disregard and cast aside your preconceptions of Stone Sour's prior material, for this is a completely different breed of animal.

11 of 12 thought this review was well written

It is now more than ten years since Stone Sour formed and it truly is incredible to look back and see how far they have come. The band's debut was clearly more commercial than the output from front man Corey Taylor's and guitarist Jim Root's other band, Slipknot, but still retained some of the nu-metal influenced carried over from that band. Despite this the band still strived to calve out an identity for themselves instead of hinging around ripping off the sound of their member's other band, and allowed Corey to focus more on clean singing than the open-throat screams that dominated Slipknot's most recent album at the time. The band then went on to evolve that sound a little further with Come What (Ever) May, the album where they geared toward a more straightforward hard rock sound and then things took a turn for the worse on the recycled mainstream garbage Audio Secrecy. Thankfully the band returned with their fourth studio album, House Of Gold And Bones Part 1, with a more than solid album and were set to continue this with the second half of this release.

House Of Gold And Bones Part 2 continues much of the aggressive rock sound that the first half took but with a harder edge to it. As soon as the second track, Black John, kicks in it will be clear to many that the band has really pushed themselves to make an angry and rather brilliant release. The riffing is simplistic and chuggy as with all Stone Sour albums but the riffs are better thought out than on any of the band's prior releases. This album has a very dark atmosphere created by the low-end guitar work that could not suit a band fronted by Corey Taylor better. If only Slipknot knew how to create this sound then maybe All Hope Is Gone would have been more listenable. The drumming is rather varied, with the faster moments to some songs being carried by a lot of snare and cymbal abuse but it is the slow paced moments of the tracks that really stand out. The album opens in a slow manner, almost sounding like the sort of song you would mourn a fallen friend to, and this agonizing, torturous mood is carried through to the soft introduction to choice cut Sadist. This song opens up with some really soft instrumental work that draws up the image of somebody going through real heart ache and Corey captures these feelings brilliantly with his clean voice. Then the song gets a lot heavier during the chorus whilst still moving along at a slow, deliberate pace that is used to maximum effect here before a very heavy riff comes in around the two thirds mark. Following this comes an emotional and well placed solo that shows off just how much Jim Root has grown as a guitarist. On here there are none of the shoehorned-in solos scattered throughout his third release with Slipknot but every solo is placed very well. If there were ever a Stone Sour song that almost everyone should check out, let it be Sadist.

Corey Taylor could well be the most improved member of the band during their decade-long career. He has grown leaps and bounds as a clean singer over the years and once again shows a degree of improvement here, although the curve in improvement is considerably smaller here. His clean singing is heart-melting during the softer moments of the album where he is free to hold notes for as long as he pleases and pour his soul into his vocals. During the heavier sections where he is singing, he shows that he has a powerful bellow that can carry the band forward very well. His screaming has actually improved a little since the last two Slipknot albums and here sounds rather intense, as Red City displays once it picks up around halfway through. Haters of Corey Taylor will still love to hate his screaming but he has definitely recovered some of the intense sound that carried Slipknot's debut. On Peckinpah he delivers quite a lot of the lyrics with screams during the heavier sections and is rather fantastic on that particular song, especially at the "I'm dying for release" section which may well be the best vocal snippet on the album. His lyrics are not the best out there but are light years ahead of the swearing-flooded nonsense that his other band uses. Red City has one or two rather questionable lines but aside from that this is actually a decent album for lyrics, and is a suitable conclusion to the concept double-album.

Part 2 of this double-album is considerably darker and more aggressive than the first half, as Corey Taylor promised, but is definitely not devoid of its beautiful acoustic sections, and even the first few seconds to Stalemate are nice to hear. The overall tone of this release is one that is a lot heavier than the first half, and it suits it as the story progresses. Black John, Peckinpah and Stalemate contain what are arguably some of the heaviest sections of songs that Stone Sour has ever put out and they are handled masterfully. Every instrument has their place in the mix to make for a fantastic wall of sound, from the varied drum performance to the low-end rumbling of the bass guitar in the back ground (that is actually more audible than before). Nowhere in sight are there moments of pointless guitar chugging as was the problem with sections of songs like Gone Sovereign from the first part, but instead every song feels relevant and necessary for this release. Sadist and Stalemate are probably the best things here, with the latter being an uncharacteristically fast-paced number that feels very refreshing among the slower songs that this album is flooded with. In my opinion this topples what the band accomplished on the first half with ease and is a great listen.

Stone Sour's double-album concept release comes to an end with House Of Gold And Bones Part 2 in superb style, from the tremolo picked guitar lines toward the end of Stalemate to the amazing opener Red City, this is a masterful accomplishment from cover to cover. This album is one that comes highly recommended from me who likes hard rock music with a real bite to it.



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user ratings (274)
Chart.
3.8
excellent
other reviews of this album
ron19 (2.5)
Stone Sour dissapoint on HOGAB 2...

Robert Garland CONTRIBUTOR (4)
The second chapter in the story sounds fuller, deeper and slightly more complex. Corey Taylor burns ...

Jeremy Bentham (4)
The sound of a potential realized...


Comments:Add a Comment 
blacktheripper
April 3rd 2013



722 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Album is streaming here http://stonesour.com/albumstream

EvoHavok
April 3rd 2013



1207 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Excellent review, man! Album truly rocks.

Digging: Chevelle - La Gargola

JanKorejRoman
April 3rd 2013



3 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Another classic release by this fantastic band.

tempest--
April 3rd 2013



10740 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I find this band pretty average at best.
Will only check this out if my dad randomly buys it like he did with Part 1.

NeoSpaz
April 3rd 2013



4500 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is not that high.
Maybe a 3.5 to a low 4, but not a classic.
it's really good though

Sapient.
April 3rd 2013



1109 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

another pleasant surprise this year, seriously didn't expect it to sound this awesome (even though part 1 was pretty great in its own right)

thumbcrusher
April 3rd 2013



3545 Comments


good to see they're not shit again, love the s/t

Sapient.
April 3rd 2013



1109 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

I thought after audio secrecy these guys were finished (the record was one of the corniest releases of 2010), but they sprung back brilliantly

thumbcrusher
April 3rd 2013



3545 Comments


i thought it was a bit better than come whatever may but still not great

will give parts 1 & 2 of this a go soon

BigPleb
April 3rd 2013



28265 Comments


That avg is gonna go down quick.

Sapient.
April 3rd 2013



1109 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

knowing how sputnik is and since the first part is at 3.7, I'm predicting a 3.8-3.9 tops

but in other news, my god, Red City rules

NeoSpaz
April 3rd 2013



4500 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

this is better at times but about the same so 3.7-3,8 yeah

Sempiternal1998
April 3rd 2013



138 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Well, it's better than Part 1, but it's not a 4.5, for sure. The hype train is at full speed, apparently.
"Red City", "Sadist" and "House Of Gold And Bones" are my favorites from this.

dmp3131
April 3rd 2013



506 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Just gave this and part I a go, damn it's real good. I heard a few songs from Audio Secrecy and wasn't impressed, but this is much better than anything I've heard so far this year. The Conflagration is my favorite song next to Do Me a Favor. Awesome album and deserves the rating it has right now. Also great review! I find it interesting that the double albums are working lately.

blacktheripper
April 3rd 2013



722 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

thnks man

Gyromania
April 3rd 2013



14641 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

definitely on par with their debut

MegaJake1024
April 3rd 2013



605 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

A 2 Gyro? I think not.

Good review, pos'd. Only listened through once, but it was pretty sick 1st time around. Wish there was one extra hard track and ballad though.

Digging: Chevelle - La Gargola

MegaJake1024
April 3rd 2013



605 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Definitely dope.

AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
April 4th 2013



7224 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Well, this is a pleasant surprise.

Imperial
April 6th 2013



1681 Comments


Really boring.



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