The Angry Scotsman
Here it is the album. The album that everyone hates. Old school fans hate it because it was released after 1988, and new school fans hate it because it sounds so different. Hell, everyone hates it because it sounds so terrible. I have heard, on more than one occasion, that this is one of the worst albums ever made. That being said, I think this is an alright album. Certainly not great, but not the god awful pile of trash most say it is. All you need to is listen, and not let the masses opinion sway you.
OK, I will start with the bad. This album sounds like a train wreck at times. Almost every song is too long, most could be cut in half. The lyrics are almost laughably bad, almost...I can't laugh though. Some gems are, "My lifestyle, determines my deathstyle", "I'm madly in anger with you", and of course "KILL KILL! KILL KILL KILL! KILL!". Usually lyrics I can just completely tune out, but when they are that bad, it just can't be done.
Common criticism of this album is "the drums sound like crap!" and "there are no solos!". Well, the drum sound is personal preference. I kind of like the sound of that snare drum. However, Lars' drumming, while usually mediocre, sometimes does not even follow the basic rule of drumming. Keeping a beat. The worst is in Some Kind of Monster, where there are long periods of him just playing woefully off beat. As for the lack of solos, that is what they wanted. It helps to give it a garage feel. Though it is certainly a down point.
Now the good! This album is a return to their old days. This album is heavy. It has a lot of thrash on it. A heavy, muddy, album with some thrash. There are some great riffs. There are also some very experimental and unique parts, for Metallica. Different is not bad, and the contrast with the rest of the album is pretty good.
This album starts out fairly well. Frantic, St. Anger, and Some Kind of Monster are all good songs. And they actually have a bit of progressiveness to them! Although St. Anger and Some Kind of Monster are too long. Invisible Kid is another good song. Again, heavy and I actually really like James' vocals in the quieter sections.
Sweet Amber begins, well sweet. Then goes into the heavy. A cool sounding song. Purify is not bad, and Invisible Kid is also not bad, but again way too long. Dirty Window is a good song, love his vocals in the mellow parts.
So, what do I have to say about this album. Under rated! It is not their best, by a long shot. However, all the flak it takes is undeserving. It is a thrashy, heavy, dirty feeling album. What's the problem? If you are not into a grungy, "garage" feel then I guess you won't like it. However, I do. It has a great feel to it. Besides, this is the end of their "sellout" days. There generic, hard rock albums were tossed out the window in favor of metal again. Maybe it is not focused, but hey...it's a start.
A decent album, with an old school, heavy feel. The vocals are bad, (but real) most of the songs are way too long, and some are just bad sounding. However, a lot are good sounding, and even a bit progressive! There is a lot of bad with this album, but if you honestly listen, you will find some great riffing (though difficult to hear) and some pretty unique songwriting (though sometimes undone by the extended song lengths). I say you should listen to this album with an OPEN MIND!