Device
Device


3.0
good

Review

by Alex Carlson USER (48 Reviews)
April 6th, 2013 | 59 replies | 17,560 views


Release Date: 04/05/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Device's debut is a solid and tight album, one that sounds more familiar than it should.

21 of 21 thought this review was well written

Possibly one of the most hyped projects to arrive out of mainstream metal, David Draiman’s long-in-the-works industrial project Device has gathered a huge amount of attention since its announcement following the beginning of Disturbed’s hiatus in 2012. Setting his most popular band aside, Draiman teamed up with Geno Lenardo, formerly of Filter, to compose the debut album of a side project, one that Disturbed apparently just couldn’t handle. Along came Device. Device has been described by Draiman as an industrial project, one more in the vein of Ministry, and to a lesser extent, Nine Inch Nails. While Draiman has been making a huge effort to distinguish Device from his more prominent band, his efforts aren’t put into legitimate effect. Device’s debut album shares more properties with Disturbed than Draiman wants to admit. Don’t expect any comfort zones to be abandoned here.

Songs like the first single “Vilify” do cast a mighty cloud over the band’s sound, separating it from the heavy, faster-paced metal of Disturbed with ferocious chugs and rhythmic grinds of guitars (courtesy of guitarist Geno Lenardo) instead of intricate guitar melodies and rapid-fire solos. As far as the musical stances go, Device harkens back to the days when Disturbed was considered “nu-metal”, where rhythm and groove were the name of the game instead of metal virtuosity and intricacy. The opener “You Think You Know”, while not the industrial-focused revolution promised by Draiman, still manages to hold the same amount of hooky metal choruses that have made the band’s members’ former projects work out so well. Sadly, Lenardo’s influence, outside of a few musical moments in songs like “Haze”, is rather scarce. The album would’ve been much more interesting had his experiences in Filter been implemented more into the final product. Instead, the album sounds more like Draiman’s band, instead of a steady collaboration between the two artists.

Draiman’s vocal style, on the other hand, is too similar to his work in Disturbed to make any significant distance from the sound. While it doesn’t reach out as far back as the rhythmic rap-influence of The Sickness, many of the songs could easily be compared to those found on Indestructible or Asylum. That being said, Draiman still retains a considerable amount of skill in his voice. He can sing melodically and cleanly, but knows when to lay down the heavier vocals when the time is right. You won’t find any of the unintelligible grunts and growls of The Sickness on Device; Draiman focuses more on singing than screaming, which does add texture to the album instead of sheer, thunderous heaviness. That being said, it still sounds too much like Disturbed, which is a massive missed opportunity for the band to try something new. Draiman’s skill isn’t the major issue here; it’s his hesitance to step outside his comfort zone that makes Device’s debut such a disappointment.

Device’s debut, for better or worse, takes a considerable amount of liberties from the guest appearances on the album. These appearances are very hit and miss, with many of the hits coming from the seasoned and experienced musicians like Black Sabbath’s Geezer Butler or Rage Against the Machine’s Tom Morello. Lzzy Hale’s appearance on the Lita Ford/Ozzy Osbourne cover “Close My Eyes Forever” feels unquestionably forced for a song that doesn’t blend in with the rest of the album anyway, while other contributions like System of a Down’s Serj Tankian’s on “Out of Line” are nowhere near as apropos on Device’s style (Tankian’s tenor sounds very out of place among the crunchy, rhythm-focused guitars). Shockingly, Avenged Sevenfold’s M. Shadows makes a respectable contribution to “Haze”, where his otherwise grating voice mixes into the background behind Draiman’s singing just enough to make the harmony sound unique. Rounding out the guest appearances is Glenn Hughes formerly of Deep Purple and Black Sabbath, though his performance sounds more honorary than progressive, giving the vocals a solid range and melody, but nothing too unique to write home about. Device doesn’t use the guest appearances as a crutch, as some are actually very well-implemented, but it could’ve used a bit more refinement and careful placement to make them feel more than just a handful of guest appearances.

Device’s debut album is not bad by any means, but it doesn’t fulfill the experimental and lofty promises that the band has created during its development. It’s not an industrial album, no matter how many times Draiman may say that it is. No amount of grinding guitars can shed the skin of Draiman’s inability to change his vocal style for a new genre or Lenardo’s restricted musicianship which is cruelly under-utilized. However, Device still manages to hold some solid metal tracks, even if some of the guest appearances miss their mark. It’s an album that holds true to the structure and resolve of alternative metal, but that’s the biggest problem. For a band so hyped with a promise for expansion beyond its members’ past endeavors, Device play it too safe, relying on the musicians’ laurels instead of treading new ground in a new world to explore. Device will more than likely appeal to fans already enamored with Disturbed and Filter (though more the former than the latter), and while that’s not necessarily a problem (especially when the songwriting is this solid), you can’t help but feel a shade of déj* vu by the album’s conclusion.



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user ratings (144)
Chart.
2.8
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other reviews of this album
ScuroFantasma (3)
'Device' is a solid sounding album with a great structure and some long awaited collaborations; fans...

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Disturbed+Attempted Industrial...


Comments:Add a Comment 
PostMesmeric
April 6th 2013



318 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Full album stream of Device's debut album on Loudwire: http://loudwire.com/david-draiman-delves-deep-debut-device-disc-stream-album/

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
April 6th 2013



4381 Comments


Good list, Alex. POS'd. Never heard these guys though, might check them out later.

tempest--
April 6th 2013



12620 Comments


Excellent review, pos'd hard.

Won't be listening to this save for maybe a few tracks.

ViperAces
April 6th 2013



12376 Comments


holy fuck nice avi

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
April 6th 2013



4381 Comments


That Alison Brie...my God.

breakingthefragile
April 6th 2013



2943 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Hernan, you wouldn't like this at all lol.

Digging: Glassjaw - Everything You Ever Wanted To Know...

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
April 6th 2013



4381 Comments


I haven't listened to it yet. But thanks for the warning I guess, haha.

ViperAces
April 6th 2013



12376 Comments


IM DONE

BassDemon333
April 6th 2013



3351 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Penance and Hunted are great songs that really have the industrial vibe that Draiman claims to have been going for with this. Some of it does sound too similar to Disturbed though.

NeoSpaz
April 6th 2013



4517 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

this is pretty cool, i was going to give it a review when it streamed the other night but oh well

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
April 6th 2013



3335 Comments


That cover reminds me of Music For The Jilted Generation from The Prodigy.

Also, the Alison Brie avatar is hot. Love it.

Digging: Karma To Burn - Arch Stanton

bloc
April 6th 2013



34679 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Not liking this at all

Digging: Anberlin - Lowborn

PumpBoffBag
April 6th 2013



327 Comments


good review, probably won't bother with this. Dig that artwork though

MegaJake1024
April 7th 2013



697 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Good, review. Pos'd.

Album is pretty good. Bland at times though. Lzzy and Shadows' appearances were disappointing to say the least. I loved Serj's though. I dig Out of Line

Digging: Wovenwar - Wovenwar

feargm
April 7th 2013



303 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Very nice review.

VisceralUproar
April 10th 2013



161 Comments


Pos'd. I used to love Disturbed back in the day for some reason but I will probably just leave this alone. Your review really tells me what I would have wasted an hour or so to discover.

Vespiion
April 10th 2013



1221 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Opener sounds just like Stricken.

Digging: BADBADNOTGOOD - BBNG2

zaruyache
April 11th 2013



5883 Comments


This band came out of nowhere. And definitely still sounds like Disturbed.

Digging: Sunwolf - Beholden To Nothing And No One

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
April 14th 2013



49791 Comments


This is scary, take it off the front page plz

Digging: Empire! Empire! (I Was a Lonely Estate) - You Will Eventually Be Forgotten

tempest--
April 14th 2013



12620 Comments


treb, that avatar... TENOUTTATEN



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