Thursday, September 10, 2015

P.O.D. "The Awakening"

Rating: RRR
Label: Universal 2015
Review by: Urban "Wally" Wallstrom

Still alive in 2015? I haven't been keeping track on Payable On Death (P.O.D.) as of lately and it's quite the surprise to find another effort from the christian act. Titling the album The Awakening might suggest they are atheists now? Nah. Probably not. But seriously, it's all about the music and this being some kind of concept album, complete with lame moments of dialogue in between songs. The crying kid gets on my nerves.

Each and every song explores a character dealing with life, making mistakes, fighting, trying, whatever. It's the drugs bad, Jesus good, kind of message and there's really nothing more to add. It's a new world order? The triple platinum hit of Satellite seem far away and they are no longer die-hard followers of the Nu-Metal (Thank God!). The secret, it seems, is to take bits and pieces of everything from their old nu-metal to punk (guest musician Lou Koller from Sick Of It All), the odd reggae twist, core metal, and the more straight ahead rock of something like This Goes Out To You.

It may seem like a rather safe record with a diverse sounding pattern and structure. Each and every band member gets to shine and pick their own favourite style and song. Worldwide sales exceeding 10 million, three Grammy award nominations, and four #1 music videos, something to brag about in their old days. The Awakening is one of those records that leaves you right in the middle of things. The Criminal Conversation (feat. Maria Brink from In This Moment) takes a slower pace with an ethereal feel and this is something to explore on future records. Final verdict: Nice. Decent. Not bad at all. Mainstream rock/metal.

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