Sep 1, 2010

Asylum by Disturbed Review

image from Amazon

Artist: Disturbed
Album: Asylum
Release Date: August 31, 2010
Tracks: 13 (plus bonus songs in Deluxe Editions)
Runtime: 47:32

Track Rundown:
(All ratings out of 5 *'s)

1) "Remnants"
All instrumental and a beautiful piece of music. It's heavy on the the guitar riffs and yet mourningful and dramatic, kind of like "One", "Welcome Home" or "Fade to Black" by Metallica. And it floats right into the second track, which is a cool album-device to use, especially if you use it right. 4 *'s out of 5, only losing a little bit of it's charm because it's so short.

2) "Asylum"
Do you like the guttural dog-monkey noise that lead singer David Draiman makes in some songs? I do! So I love this song. Every minute of this four and a half minute track somehow surpasses the awesomeness of the last. 5 *'s out of 5.

3) "The Infection"
This track has some amazing guitar work, both in the opening of the song and in the empty bridges near the chorus. The lyrics and chorus are phenomenal but the pace of the verses really kind of sours the song for me. It felt a little too light and ... dare I say, pop-rock. Still not an awful song though, 3 3/4 *'s out of 5.

4) "Warrior"
Similar to the song "Indestructible" from Disturbed's last album (also named Indestructible), this song I'm kind of on the fence about because it's so raw, gritty and loud. I like the lyrics and the tone, but there's something a little too rough about it. However, I know that when I hear the song again a few times, especially if matched with some awesome videos like a Call of Duty commercial or a video tributing something bad to the bone, I'll fall madly in love with this track. So keeping that in mind, I give this track 4 1/2 *'s out of 5.

5) "Another Way To Die"
The first track of the album that lead me to buying this album essentially blind (meaning without hearing any of the other songs). It's so in your face and packs so much attitude that I can't not love it. 5 *'s out of 5.

6) "Never Again"
This song would be wild to witness/hear live at a concert. The music is nothing short of incredible, but I'm actually on the fence about the lyrics. It's really driven home that the lead singer is Jewish and is still torn up about the Holocaust, especially when there are people out there who believe it never happened. I know this isn't the first time Disturbed have touched upon something semi-political, if that's even the right word for talking about this subject, but it doesn't reel me in. If the lyrics are just a little more vague talking about genocides in general rather than the specific WWII occurrence I think it would have effected a much vaster audience. I mean there are still genocides going on today. 4 *'s out of 5, but it might be a generous rating.

7) "The Animal"
Werewolf songs are awesome so long as you block out images from Twilight when listening to them. Other excellent Werewolf (or similar) songs, "She-Wolf" by Megadeth, "Animal I Have Become" by Three Days Grace, "Werewolf Women of the SS" by Rob Zombie, and "Werewolf, Baby!" also by Rob Zombie. There's something very relatable to having a wild Id (psychology term) that wants to break lose, and that'll score some brownie points with me. 5 *'s out of 5.

8) "Crucified"
This track I feel like I'm going to be unfair to, because if it came from a band like Breaking Benjamin it would instantly respark my long-long-long-lost love for that band. If any new band came out with this song, I'd love them. It's edgy and racy, but on the whole for the album it's really one of the least pleasing songs. It's a big letdown from some of the five star tracks I've heard, but I still can't find a way to give it a bad score. 3 *'s out of 5, though it hurts me to do so.

9) "Serpentine"
Mad TV has ruined this track title for me. Anybody remember Loraine and her always-behind-the-camera husband Carl causing mischief then bolting while Loraine calls out "Serpentine!"? Anyways, while "your heart is serpentine" (meaning s-shaped) is a cool line, I couldn't get into this song much. Pretty skippable, but still can appreciate the work that went into it. 3 *'s out of 5.

10) "My Child"
According to Wikipedia, this is a song about miscarriage. What a perky topic! No, really, it's about much more than that. The story tells the tale of a man into all the bad stuff, sinning it up and going crazy, but when he finds out he's going to be a dad he puts childish behavior away. Then his kid doesn't make it and he's left empty and broken. THAT'S DEEP! 5 *'s for me for singing about a real topic.

11) "Sacrifice"
While not as catchy as the ever-popular "Break Stuff" by Limp Bizkit, similar message but with the darkness turned way up. I can dig it. 4 *'s out of 5.

12) "Innocence"
Boy, does that Disturbed like to sing about Hell or what? A reminder at how desensitized we are to all the bad news in the media, while the lead singer isn't. He's sick of hearing about the dad who murders his family, or mothers killing their children. Music-wise it's not the best track on the album, but overall the song is a thinker and has a good message. 4 *'s out of 5.

13) "Ishfwilf" AKA "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For" originally by U2
When I saw this on the track listing my curiosity generated a "lol, I gotta hear this." Apparently it's supposed to be a secret bonus track, because you get a minute and a half of silence before anything kicks in. ... Yeah, that's a good idea in today's modern day of digital media. I really wanna put this song on my iPod or even on my computer so that whenever I get to this track I have to freak out and wonder why my stereo/speakers aren't working. And as if people don't have internet these days and are FORCED to go just off of what tracks are listed on the back cover of the album rather than look at the Amazon/iTunes/etc track listing. Just... what? But with my face-palm to the producers out of the way, this song is hilariously epic. It's not bad at all and in my mind shows another side to the band saying they know they're supposed to be dark, brooding and loud, but they're still humans who have other interests and occasional moments of happiness. And the tone of the albeit heavy metal cover is one of brevity saying "Hey, we like to have fun too!" I love it just for the ridiculousness. 5 *'s out of 5.

My Highlights:
"Asylum", "Another Way To Die", "The Animal", "My Child", and "Ishfwilf" just for the sure ridiculousness.

Overall Rating:
Averaging all the track ratings, the overall rating for Asylum is a whopping 4 1/2 *s out of 5! That's 9 out of 10! And if you pick up a deluxe edition of this album (the version I got off of Amazon included a live version of "Down With The Sickness" and "Stricken") then this might even include an extra 1/4 * for you! Just the standard edition alone however blows most albums today's music industry serves out of the water!

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