This review's been a long time coming.
Supergroup A Perfect Circle's previous works, Mer De Noms and Thirteenth Step, while good, showcase more the same lines as most of Keenan's other work; aggressive, pseudo-experimental metal that appeals to a wide variety of music enthusiasts. It's a different case for their third (and seemingly final) album, Emotive (eMOTIVe). Emotive is mostly a cover album, spare two track written by the band. Named after the sociological term for the expression of feeling, Emotive is an album that showcases covers of songs that center around a defined political meaning. Many of the songs unsurprisingly come from the motherfeared anarcho-punk bands of the 70's and 80's, including Crucifix, Black Flag, and Fear. There are other more interesting bands covered as well, like electronic band Depeche Mode, Devo, and Joni Mitchell.
Emotive is one of the most eclectic albums I own in my collection. Much of this comes from the diversity of artists chosen to be covered, yet all do follow a semblance of a motif- this being one of dark and brooding antiestablishmentarianism. Even the hopeful nature of John Lennon's classic 'Imagine' becomes a misanthropic ballad that feels more pessimistic than optimistic. The voice of Keenan brings this home very much, not to mention the practical smorgasbord of instruments that invokes some much needed emotion that their debut lacked. Emotive features some of the best musical blending I've heard, where the aggression and somberness mix into a pure album that plucks at both your heart and your mind.
I've always found enjoyment in Emotive, from casual background music to a more thought-provoking sit-down hour of listening. In any case Emotive could appeal to any kind of person you are.