Volume 92, Issue 8
Wednesday, September 16, 1998
wheeling and dealing
|ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT
Embrace your veggies
Follow the leader
Korn's latest album marks a new beginning for these hate-laden, metal kings. The new album still swells full of all that vintage, tortured angst, but unlike the band's self-titled debut and 1996's Life Is Peachy, Korn have found a way to design its hate with more skill. OH MY GOD! KORN CAN ACTUALLY SOUND MELODIC!
Korn displays the talent it has always possessed but never truly shown on previous releases. On the first track, "It's On," Jonathan Davis, the band's lead singer screams "Come on! It's on!" It seems he's also excited to be able to show the world that Korn are indeed musically endowed. And it doesn't stop there.
"Got the Life," the album's lead single, is probably the band's most radio friendly song yet but it still rocks. Hell, you could even dance to it (but hardcore Korn fans would probably kick your ass).
The album is layered with eerie sounds and bass beats, proving that Korn has jumped on the electronic bandwagon, sort of. But who's gonna mess with them? The band has also jumped on the hip-hop and gangsta wagon.
The stand-out track is "Freak On A Leash" which is the one track where Korn's old-school malevolence and new experimentally rich sound meld perfectly.
It's still Davis' vocal styles that carry the album to greatness. He can rap, sing and scream in one song, while sustaining a fury-filled rhythm. Korn is definitely paving new roads and could even be revolutionizing heavy metal as we know it.
Despite the new changes, Korn will still throw you in a head-banging, body shaking craze that will have your parents calling the local psychiatrists before you reach track two.
The Good Will Out
In every Brit-pop review since the late '70s there has been a promotional spin promising the next greatest overseas invasion to conquer American charts.
The latest band to cause a stir is Embrace, who polishes its poppy sound with loud, guitar-driven rock 'n roll strings and brass. The album's lead single, "All You Good Good People" is a rockin' hit, supported beautifully with a powerful orchestral arrangement.
The band's latest album, The Good Will Out, covers all the bases, with powerful rock anthems, emotional ballads and guitar pop songs. It conveys an overall happy outlook, with all the necessary "la la la's."
Embrace carry the stigma of being aligned with Oasis or the Verve. For this British band to do anything significant it's going to have to grow beyond these comparisons. For now, Embrace remain good but far from great. A few catchy songs are lost in an average album.
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