Review Summary: Come sit close to me.
Coming off the major success of their debut record, Seether didn’t need to reinvent the wheel to recapture the attention of old fans and steal some new ones along the way. They could’ve lazed their way through Karma And Effect
and probably gotten away with it, but that’s not exactly what they did. In fact, they got darker, heavier, and are all the better for it on their sophomore release.
The animalistic howl and Drop C# tuned riff that open the album on the dark, bitter “Because Of Me” indicate the rest of the album fairly well. Gone is the Drop Eb/Drop D tuning used previously (Drop B is even used on the enjoyable “Given To Me”, the only time the band went lower than Drop C), the more laid back moments like “69 Tea” or “Driven Under”, in are ferocious, angst-driven alt-metal numbers. Shaun brings out his characteristic growl multiple times and just generally sounds more pissed off (if the cry of “I want to see you SUFFER” in “Because Of Me” combined with the cacophonous bridge doesn’t have you screaming along while moshing with living room furniture, I’m not sure what will). But the catchy choruses are still present, don’t be mistaken. “Remedy”, “Truth”, and “Burrito” all boast sing-along choruses over quiet/loud, sometimes heavy/sometimes not dynamics. The songwriting has also improved greatly, exemplified in the dual scream/sing bridge of “Simplest Mistake”, the Afrikaans-inspired “Interlude”, and acoustic ballad “Plastic Man”. Finally, the chemistry between the lead and rhythm guitar is quite nice and even at times intricate, and will only serve to hook the listener further into the record.
But for all these nice moments of improvement or simply enjoyable tracks, some of this comes off as bad Disclaimer
B-sides, namely “I’m The One”. Though it tries to capture the bitterness and satire of classic “Gasoline”, it just feels too much like a ripoff and should’ve been left out with the rest of the filler. Lyrically, Seether drop some thought-provoking moments (verses of “Remedy”, “Diseased”, “Simplest Mistake”), as well as the earworm of “Remedy”, but nothing to really write home about. Personally, I love darker, more introspective lyrics, so I was quite pleased for the most part, but lyrics are fairly objective.
Seether did what they needed to for this album: they didn’t reinvent the wheel, but they did successfully make the jump from calmer post-grunge to roaring alternative metal. Those who enjoyed the better moments of Disclaimer
will love this record, and it’s also a fantastic one for getting into this band.