Anthems For The Damned

Written by: PP on 02/08/2008 09:47:23

Time to move into the next album warranting a review rating of \"great\" on our scale: Filter and their first new album in over six years, \"Anthems For The Damned\". Many people - including the undersigned - had written this band off once they kind of withered away over the years, thinking that \"Hey Man Nice Shot\" and \"Take My Picture\", arguably the band\'s two most famous songs, were the last we\'d hear of this band. Oh, how wrong we all were. Over their 15 year career, Filter have consciously been moving from hard-hitting industrial rock towards a more alternative rock approach. Today, with \"Anthems For The Damned\", Filter cement themselves as one of the few real, uncompromising rock bands of the 90s that are still around. To say this is their comeback album is a gross understatement, because alternative rock doesn\'t get much better than this unless the franchise is Foo Fighters (who seem to be topping themselves album after album, regardless of what critics are saying).

Opening with monumental \"Soldiers Of Misfortune\", Filter are tighter than ever while demonstrating their ability to convey a landscape of Arizona desert-like proportions musically. Vocalist Richard Patrick hasn\'t sounded this good on record ever before: his emotionally super-charged croon is incredibly voluminous, sounding like something coming out of a jet engine during the song.

\"What\'s Next\" demonstrates Filter\'s impressive firepower when it comes to writing riffs that matter. The song is as fast and hard-hitting as some of the earliest songs this band has written. The sheer heaviness contributes to the sense of urgency the band displays throughout the album, although I\'m still convinced the band is at their best when Patrick is allowed to utilize his extensive shout to its maximum; listening to him on \"The Wake\" or even \"The Take\" makes you think of a true modern day rock star, a challenger for Dave Grohl if you will.

\"Cold\" is slightly softer on the guitar, attempting to re-produce the \"Take My Picture\" atmosphere, and it does so surprisingly well. The chorus is chilling and memorable, sure to shoot the band straight to the most played lists of any modern rock radio that wants to take itself seriously. \"Kill The Day\", positioned towards the late-middle of the record, doesn\'t come as close, though. More on that in the next paragraph.

When it comes to the middle section of the album, the quality of songwriting drops slightly. The choruses aren\'t as good, Patrick\'s croons aren\'t long enough, and the riffs aren\'t as inventive, or alternatively as grabbing as nearer the start of the album. That being said, they aren\'t bad songs, but they just don\'t measure up to the alt rock godhood we hear elsewhere on the album. This is the only reason \"Anthems For The Damned\" isn\'t rated as a perfect 10 for being, simply said, a fantastic alternative rock album and certainly the best one I\'ve heard in the last three or four years in the dying genre (everyone seems to be either metal, indie or punk these days, why are rock bands disappearing? I guess we can thank bands like Saliva and Trapt). If you wrote Filter off a few years ago like myself, then prepare to be monumentally surprised - \"Anthems For The Damned\" will be on many top 10 lists this year.


Download: Soldiers Of Misfortune, Cold
For the fans of: Vertical Horizon, Foo Fighters, Smashing Pumpkins, Deftones, Chevelle

Release date 13.05.2008
Pulse Records

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