Sloth – Dead Generation

sloth 2003 Hollywood Records

This disc still sounds fresh 6 years after its initial release.   No small feat for any CD, and I can’t believe I didn’t give it more of a chance back then (whatwith my obsession with opening track “All We Know”).

“All We Know” is just an incredible song to open the album with, Greek bouzouki sound stylings showing their influence right off the bat.  The guitar sound is heavy and very nu-metal sounding, while the overall sense of style and dynamic on the CD is much more diverse.

The aforementioned Greek bouzouki influences are all over this disc not just in the instrumentation in places but in the overall effect on melody.    Though they sound nothing like Sepultura, the Greek influence here is prevalent much the same way the Brazilian influence was on Sepultura’s seminal Roots album.

“All We Know” is almost a “10 Most Truly Abysmal” song for me.   Just a dynamic breath of fresh air and it should have been their first single.  “Someday” and “Dead Generation” are both good songs but they’re not singles, though they were released as such.  Why “Even Though It’s Over” wasn’t released as a single, I’ll never know.  I can’t get that song (especially the chorus) out of my head.

“You Can’t Look Away” is another stellar track that once again shows a band in uncanny command of dynamics in their music (an amazing track, really), while “Media” is a fast and aggressive blast of energy.   Extra kudos to lead throat Rich Love  for some killer diversity in his singing style.

So often with younger bands, dynamics sound forced rather than letting them happen naturally.  With Sloth, it sounds natural and closing track “Billygoat” is a great example of their command of both dynamics and melody.   Lyrics at times venture too close to trite for my taste, but thankfully never totally give in.   Probably just a matter of personal taste.

A decidedly grey mood, this disc triumphs due to a prevalence of silver linings…and you’ve just got to admire their work ethic.  I mean, they got their recording deal because they followed the Warped Tour in their van with their equipment and played for people in the parking lot before the actual Warped show started.

They wanted it…and you can hear it in their music.   Will someone please tell me what ever happened to these guys?  It just ain’t fair.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5