Blue Oyster Cult
The Symbol Remains


4.0
excellent

Review

by MorphineInhaler USER (3 Reviews)
October 10th, 2020 | 24 replies


Release Date: 10/09/2020 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Biggest surprise of 2020

So new BOC album after 19 years. You'd think it would be a train wreck worse than Club Ninja, considering that Curse of the Hidden Mirror was also not that great , I thought that too. But this has been the biggest surprise of 2020 for me. The albums is great and, in my opinion, their best since Fire Of Unknown Origin.
I have no idea how they managed to pull it off but every song on here is fun, full of energy, catchy and cheesy as hell. It's the perfect combo for any Blue Oyster Cult album and that is amazing considering how old these guys are.

Now this album is clearly on the heavier side, way heavier than Fire Of Unknown Origin or even Secret Treaties, I'd put it next to Agents Of Fortune . The opener reminds me of This Ain't the Summer of Love as well, it's heavy and loud with a great chorus. Surprisingly good lyrics too it's dark and fun like all other BOC releases. "Box In My Head" is the other single and second track and it's ok, the music itself is great but the lyrics are a bit of a mess (especially the chorus what's up with that one), the vocals aren't especially mind blowing either (on the entire record in fact) but they are way better than i expected, Buck's voice may have gotten worse but he holds up surprisingly well.

Tainted Love is a lot slower than the first two songs but it is the catchiest, fantastic chorus and a surprisingly good solo midway through. Nightmare Epiphany has that classic BOC piano and some surf rock riffs here and there with another great ending. The cheesiness really starts to become apparent with Edge of the World, which is a conspiracy theory song with again another incredible chorus. And if you thought a conspiracy theory song was cheesy what about The Machine which starts off with a sample of the Iphone ringtone and, naturally, it's about phones. It's not the "technology bad" kinda song either (I don't think anyway), it's more about the addiction and benefits a phone has.

Other highlights include Train True (Lennie's Song) that sounds like what you would hear in a cheesy 80s cowboy movie, Florida Man which is about Florida Man and the closer Fight which is a nice little closer.

However i have to bring up 2 songs on this album that surprised me immensely The Return of St. Cecilia and The Alchemist, which come close to being one of the best Blue Oyster Cult songs ever. The Return of St. Cecilia is fantastic, reminds me a lot of Dominance And Submission from Secret Treaties, it is one of the best written songs on this album for sure.
And The Alchemist which landed in my top 5 BOC tracks. It's got it all, the piano, the concept about some magical being, the dark atmosphere it's all there and it's glorious.

Now I won't say this is perfect by any means. Songs like Stand and Fight and There's a Crime which i found rather boring, and the album could have used at least one slower song or a ballad. It gets kinda tiresome by the end.

Though considering this is their first new album in 19 year and the fact that the original members are quite old this is a fantastic releases that i did not think i would enjoy as much as i did . Highly recommend giving it a listen.


user ratings (21)
3.7
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
CaliggyJack
October 10th 2020


3579 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

BOC returning is the music 2020 needed

parksungjoon
October 10th 2020


22172 Comments


wow

Digging: Have Mercy (MD) - Armageddon Descends

Pikazilla
October 10th 2020


12753 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Better than any ghost album, agreed

parksungjoon
October 10th 2020


22172 Comments


idk about that

Pikazilla
October 10th 2020


12753 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Most things are better than ghost tho

bigguytoo9
October 10th 2020


841 Comments


Dude Antonio Browns single is better than Ghost.

parksungjoon
October 10th 2020


22172 Comments


now you got me curious about ghost

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
October 11th 2020


21826 Comments


Pos'd for not mentioning Ghost in your review.

Neg to Pika for making his first comment about Ghost ;)

Digging: Crippled Black Phoenix - Ellengaest

deathschool
October 11th 2020


26178 Comments


Hm.

Digging: DJ Python - Mas amable

Pikazilla
October 11th 2020


12753 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Hmmmmmmm

Sabrutin
October 11th 2020


7055 Comments


Really tempted but I hated That Was Me as a single, reggae bit aside it sounded awful to me, like BOC giving an awkward Metallica impression

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
October 11th 2020


21826 Comments


Agree, that single was borderline embarrassing, specially the video.

e210013
October 11th 2020


3043 Comments


I'm a bit curious about their new album. I always liked this guys. Probably I'll check it as soon as I have time. Your review caught my attention to it. So, pos.

SuzyC
October 11th 2020


107 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Hmm, gonna hafta hunt this down. BOC manage to slide in a couple of greats songs even on their crappy albums.

Digging: Raventale - Planetarium II

SymbolicInTime
October 11th 2020


6643 Comments


That single wasn't good [3]

The Alchemist is pretty great! Don't have any interest in spending an hour on this, but glad I could pluck that track out easily from your review.

Pikazilla
October 11th 2020


12753 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Mate

Senetrix666
October 11th 2020


62 Comments


pika you 1 mariner and 5 this steaming pile of garbage? mate.

Pikazilla
October 11th 2020


12753 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Clearly not a serious rating



Also, Mariner is the worst CoL, fuck that album. Christmas's vocals are the only good thing about it

Senetrix666
October 11th 2020


62 Comments


nah

Pikazilla
October 11th 2020


12753 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

lol



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