Godsmack - When Legends Rise

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Having now seemingly settled into four-year album cycles, it's time for another Godsmack album, and letting more time pass between records has allowed the band to really figure out if the new things they try on each one, resonate with the fans. In general, they don't. The largely forgotten IV and depressingly poor turnouts to shows on Sully Erna's recent solo tour for Hometown Life - by far the two best records to be associated with Godsmack in the last 15 years - demonstrate that the fans want fist-pumping, sing-a-long rock songs from this band and nothing more. There'll always be some who say that's not true, but in the end, everyone votes with their feet, and the proof is clearly plain for the band to see, as subsequent albums have become more and more safe. Previous album 1000hp was chock full of anthems, including one of the band's finest ever in Something Different, with lots of big riffs, and that's the main difference between that record, and this one. There's not a lot of aggression here at all. This is generally a much brighter album with a lot of short, sharp songs of single potential, all very melodic and very pleasant. None of the songs are particularly bad, in fact most of them are very memorable - and will no doubt be heavier live - there's just no spark or adventure here. IV wasn't an aggressive album either, it's not essential that Godsmack need to be heavy to be interesting, but that record had a boatload of new ideas and intrigue on it, whereas this one doesn't. Nevertheless, there are several songs here that are destined to become live favourites, particularly the title track, Eye of The Storm, Take It To The Edge, and Let It Out, and the album's one piano-led ballad (Under Your Scars) stands up against most of Hometown Life, so will likely find its way into Sully's solo set. The fanbase will be very pleased with this release, but it's a treading water album. Hopefully the next one, in 2022 if their current pattern holds, will be more creative.

Written by Andy Lye
More: 2018, Albums, Alternative, Hard/Heavy Rock, Quickplay Reviews, ,

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