True Self

Written by: PP on 16/04/2006 17:42:21

I think most fans and critics alike welcome "True Self" as the new definitive SOiL album. Just like the title suggests, the band has finally been able to deduct their own sound away from their previously generic, rather mainstream work. We all remember songs like "Breaking Me Down" and "Halo", that were fun to listen to for a couple of times, before throwing them into the recycle bin just like the rest of the nu-metal movement, right? Well, regardless of what you thought of their previous albums like "Redefine", "True Self" is likely to become your favorite SOiL album to date in no time.

The album starts with a razorsharp guitar introduction to the opening track "Fight For Life", which perfectly demonstrates the bands new vocalist A.J. Cavalier's broad vocal range. He can whisper, sing, scream and damn near growl, and this is all during the same song. "Give It Up" continues on the same, more metallic line than we are used to from the band, but it isn't until the brilliant "Pick Me Up" that the band shows their true self (pun intended). Sure, the sharp and technical guitar solo of "Fight For Life" is mighty, but the way the band is able to put together melody and heavyness as well as on "Pick Me Up" overshadows anything else the band has done to date. The track begins with slow, pounding riffage, followed by the almost industrially tuned guitars and the soared vocals, before the heavy but still oh-so-catchy chorus featuring screamsing (my new term for A.J being able to switch from a scream to singng within the same breath) and melody that'll haunt you in your dreams for the next week or so.

I'm willing to ignore the two unfortunate side-steps the band takes with "Hear Me" and the title track, as they lean too much back towards the generic nu-metal tag their previous albums were plagued by. Luckily, the vocally heaviest song on the album, "Forever Dead" saves the day and puts the album back on track. I must admit that I was scared for the band not being able to follow up on the strong opening statement later on in the album, but tracks like the catchy "Until It's Over" and "One Last Song", the song that takes use of the silent/loud dynamics, assure the listener that this certainly is not the case.

The production on the album is top notch: it poses no problem for the listener to be able to distinguish the vocals and the blistering, razorsharp guitar solos from each other at any time during the album. Some critics may still take the path of calling SOiL one of the only survivors of the nu-metal movement, but I'm going to go ahead and call them metal as a result of "True Self", their best and most relevant album to date. Heck, I'll even go see them live if they come to my town.


Download: Pick Me Up, Fight For Life
For the fans of: Stone Sour, Spineshank, Drowning Pool
Listen: Myspace

Release date 27.03.2006
DRT Entertainment

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