Ahhh, poor Static-X. They are the unfortunate victims of the recent changes in popular metal music. These days you have to have blazing shred like guitar solos and catchy little breakdowns. Static-X has no guitar solos, and nothing in the way of breakdowns as far as Lamb Of God-esque metal goes.
In fact, popular metal music changed so much between the release of the classic Wisconsin Death Trip, Machine, and Shadow Zone that I"m sure there are many who would dispute my definition of Static-X as metal. However, I am not interested in what any of those self appointed metal experts have to say, and I will continue to refer to Static-X as metal.
I have to say that after the release of their sophomore album Machine, I really appreciated Static-X as a band. That together with an excellent live show really kept Static-X a frequently played band for me. So first we are going to look at the tracks individually, and then move on to reviews of the album as a whole. (All ratings are out of 5)
1. Destroy All
A solid opener, however the chorus is a little weak, as is the bridge, but it has a nice rhythm to the verses. Wayne"s voice is very strong on this one.3
2. Control It
A sort of average track, has an awesome vocal section on chorus, but lacks rhythm and feel. 3
3. New Pain
The best part of this track is the vocals. Wayne sings a harmonized double tracked part on the verse, and does a really good job on the chorus, somewhat catchy, but the guitars are somewhat boring on this track, mostly drums come through the mix, and some of the harmonizing sounds a little "cheesy" during the bridge. 3.5
4. Shadow Zone
This track is awesome! Wayne"s vocals are great, and the melody of the track is great. The double tracked vocal harmonies are perfect on this song, and the keyboards interact with the guitars very well. A very catchy little tune. 3.5
5. Dead World
Sorry dudes, boring sort of song here. The electronic parts and drums are all muddled together and Wayne"s harmonies are kind of awkward. Not very interesting. Definitely filler. 2.5
This song would be horrible if it wasn"t for the energy that Wayne puts out in the vocals, at this point the album is pretty boring. 2
7. The Only
This song really shines through the previous tracks as being an incredibly listenable tune, with some very interesting sampling and guitar work. Some of Wayne"s best vocals and lyrics. 4
8. Kill Your Idols
A fairly good track, however the vocals are a little to dissonant for my taste, still a fairly strong track. 3
9. All in Wait
Again, some strange dissonant harmonizing here with the vocals, but the chorus is very strong and catchy. 3.5
This track somewhat aggravates me. It has a fairly simple, catchy guitar riff that can be attractive for a while. However, eventually the inexplicable name started to annoy me. Good for the first few listens. 3.5
I was impressed by this track, not because I like it so much, but mostly because of the melody for the verse, it"s dissonant, but it is very attractive to the ear and provides a solid foundation for a very emotional chorus. However, the simplicity of the lyrics sort of detracts from the song, but still a favorite on this album for me. 4
A transition track. Boring, however, the drums are kind of cool. Still, it"s not actually a "song". So no rating for it.
This song kicks. Excellent vocals, a solid base and drums, as well as some interesting guitar work. Add the excellent synth section and you have the best track on the album. Really shows another side of the band. Wayne wrote some great lyrics for this song, and it still is a great listen, even after three years of owning the album. 5
Overall, this album is a different direction musically than any other Static-X release to date. So if you are a Static-X fan, then don"t be surprised that this album is different. However, there are some great moments where we see a very melodic, musical side to the band, while still retaining Wayne"s awesome unique vocals, which are definitely the strong point of this release. However the guitar work is something to be desired. Some of the riffs are almost exactly the same, and on only a few tracks do we get a very head bang able rhythm, however the melodies are unique and interesting, so if you want to hear some vocals that really stand out, then get this cd.