So before I get into this article, let me say this….I’m well aware that I’m going to make some people mad with this article. That’s fine. I’m giving my opinion, for what it’s worth….and you know what they say about opinions.
Now, to get down to business. Disturbed just released their new album “Evolution”. I was intrigued from the snippets that I had heard, especially with the song “Are You Ready”. After listening to this album, I can tell you that I was not ready for this. Let’s go back to Disturbed‘s debut album “The Sickness” for a moment. David Draiman‘s vocal style was different, even unusual would be a good term to describe it. The band had a nice, crushingly heavy sound and were favored to be the Nu-Metal heir apparent equivalent of Judas Priest.
Fast forward to Evolution and what you find is completely different. Now, I realize that bands tend to evolve in sound over time. That’s not unusual. But frankly, the new Disturbed album, Evolution is boring. It’s not just a problem for Disturbed. Check out the latest Godsmack album, or even the latest Five Finger Death Punch release and you’ll find a bland cookie-cutter formula. These days, most rock bands seem unable or unwilling to take chances musically. They either sound like they’re releasing the same album over and over or seem to be trying desperately to sell albums by hitting a stale, worn out formula for radio friendly airplay. A formula that seems to have been in play based off of the last model that the large record companies used to crank out the latest, soulless, hit machine in pursuit of the almighty dollar, and unfortunately, lacks creativity. This seems to be what’s driving the direction of the new Disturbed sound. After scoring success with the radio hit of their cover of Simon and Garfunkel’s ‘Sound Of Silence”, the band have almost created an entire album of similar sounding, subdued songs, to look for that radio airplay cash machine again. What’s so disappointing about this is, whether you like them or not, the band are incredibly talented musicians, but seem to have settled for mediocrity in exchange for another hit single.
Again, they’re not the only band with this problem….tune in to any corporate controlled radio station and you’ll find an all day playlist of stuff that sounds almost the same. So much so, that it’s often hard to distinguish the bands apart from one another. This is exactly why Greta Van Fleet is getting a lot of attention. It’s not that what they are doing is original by any means, but they don’t sound like the current crop of generic bands. Granted, they have the spectre of ripping off Led Zeppelin looming over their head, but at least it’s different. Not, until rock bands give up this outdated formula and find their own sound, because they are inspired, artistic musicians and not lead around like a horse with a carrot for commercial success, will you see a dramatic resurgence in rock n’ roll, dominating the music scene again.