A Perfect Circle was formed only as a side project of Tool's lead singer Maynard James Keenan.. and it was a considerable amount of time before it morphed into a hard and concrete band. People were still unsure of what to expect from the merging of the geniuses who were present in the lineup...but their debut Mer De Noms dispelled any doubts about their abilites.
The build-up to the second album was wrought with line up changes that seemed to have sealed the bands fate. But whatever people might have thought, A Perfect Circle came back with a masterpiece - Thirteenth Step. It went darker and deeper (if such a thing is possible) than Mer De Noms. The music was altogether more haunting and even though the songs were always frightening you would never want to forget them.
1. The Package - There could have been no better way to start the album. It's the longest song on the album, clocking in at 7:40. Maynard's whispering vocals catch you from the second they start. And you realize that these lyrics really have meanings unlike the hundred other alt. rock bands. The rhythm of the drums stays unforgettable with the characteristic roll. As the music builds up in the background, you can also hear the hate build up in Maynard's voice. The hitting distortion that blows up in the middle of the song is just heavenly...Undoubtedly one of the best songs on the album. - 5/5
2. Weak and Powerless - The intro bass riff seems reminiscent of Tool. Although at the first listen, the song doesn't catch your attention, it grows on you. And after you've heard him sing 'so weak and powerless over you' you're never going to want to forget that line. All in all, a good song. The effects on the guitars staying with mainly clean tones lend good feel to it. 4/5
3. The Noose - This was one of the first APC songs I ever heard, when I was still primarily a Tool fan. It's true this is not the song for the guitar buff...most of the song doesn't work on guitars but on effects. The delays are brilliant and the piano is just haunting. And when the drums lose their mute and come in full force, you almost shiver. That's the effect this song has. It's one of those you can't express in words. The lyrics have their say over you...and you just drown in the song...5/5
4. Blue - Blue is one of the weirdest songs on the album. As usual, the delay effect is used to great results...but it takes a while to get used to the singing int he verses. But, it blows into a really great chorus which is the pivotal point of the song. This song is the type that people who are already APC fans would enjoy. All in all, its a good song. 4/5
5. Vanishing - Another great song that depends on experimentation. You wouldn't be hearing this too often on the radio. But looking into the song and the work that's done on it, its a brilliant piece of art. It's not undeniably catchy, but its the sort of song you would just suddenly want yourself to listen to late at night... dissa-pear...3/5
6. A Stranger - This song has the same exact effect as The Noose. Played mainly on an acoustic guitar tuned way down...with a couple of synthesizers and slides playing in the background. Brilliant lyrics again...they almost draw a picture for you. The song really pulls you in...you can listen to it over and over again without it losing its palpability..it'll always be yours. 5/5
7. The Outsider - This is definitely the most commercial song on the record. Some reason, i feel it takes after Judith on Mer De Noms. It's fast, got catchy singing and a nu-metal feel to it. The lyrics of hatred and madness hit the target again...disconnect and self-destruct one bullet at a time. APC don't seem to be slowing down. 5/5
8. Crimes - Nothing to review.. it's simply a drum break. Not really a song...
9. The Nurse Who Loved Me - Weird song...Filled with mainly synthesized sounds and some strings...weird lyrics that must be really metaphorical...or just a lot of pointless sentences. Anyway, sometimes you really gotta have pharmacy keys. 3/5
10. Pet - Brilliant song...the metal riff pounds from the second the song starts... and Maynard's silent vocals merge with the rest of the song perfectly. It is much better than the version (APC actually covered themselves) on Emotive. 5/5
11. Lullaby - Just another not-a song thing...picking up lyrics from Pet.
12. Gravity - Of course its not the Package...but it does what Orestes did for Mer De Noms (of course, orestes is way better). But it's a fine way to end the album. Maybe you tend to think that it sort of rips off the other songs on the album...yeah..it does give that similar tone. But it's in no ways a bad song. 3/5
p.s. my name the28club... it was something jim morrison started when he committed suicide at the age of 28...he was joined by both Jimi Hendrix and Kurt Cobain...coincidence?
Jim Morrison forever