Party In The Paddock. Ricky Ponting. Cascade beers. The humble Apple Isle has gifted us …
From Michigan modern rockers comes their fifth self-titled studio album, a name that makes a statement of solidified realness and compared to past releases, demonstrates a grasp on the realities of the band both musically and personally.
Pop Evil is an excellent effort and shows great development. Vocalist Leigh Kakaty has greater confidence in the manipulation of his vocals, bending and twisting his range as he experiments with different melodic characteristics to great effect. Holding this up is a band who, while they perform hard rock at its most excellent, are still, some ten years on from their debut, dare it be said, overshadowed by the complexities of their front man’s self-indulgent nature.
Lead single Waking Lions is killer, simply killer. The juxtaposition of themes, the aggressive force against personal and social demons combined with the liberation of spirit and newfound self-confidence, is empowering to say the least. The lilting and euphoric chorus punches its way to the receptors of relation in the listener, a song of commonality. But is this one song enough to solidify a great album?
Pop Evil deliver relentless messages of solidarity against the powers that be with Ex Machina and Art Of War across some intense guitar riffs, before shaking things up into the realms of electronica and industrial metal in Nothing But Thieves. While it’s great Pop Evil have an introspective nature in these songs, which are in essence very uplifting, it’s perhaps a little disconcerting that Pop Evil are unsettled in their style, yo-yoing through multiple ideas and though it’s admirable they refuse to be pigeonholed, the choppy waves of uncertainty might leave the listener disconcerted.
STANDOUT TRACKS: Waking Lions, Colors Bleed, Nothing But Thieves
STICK THIS NEXT TO: Shinedown, Seether, 3 Doors Down