Finally I'm going to get to talk about Indestructible
. When I got into Disturbed
in '06, Ten Thousand Fists
was already out and about, so Indestructible
became the first Disturbed
album to come out while I was a fan. At the time, Disturbed
was my favorite band bar none, and naturally I was really excited.
I was there at my local HMV the day it came out, and I bought it right away. Now, I've had this album for almost three years, and I've had time to develop my opinions and really consider this album over that time. So anyways, let's move into talking about it.
The first thing to say is how this album changes the playing field for Disturbed
compared to their previous three albums. The album seems to have lost quite a bit of its agression, but it makes up for it with improved instrumentation and a somewhat more consistent atmosphere. As an improvement, almost every song has a guitar solo in it, so Disturbed
's guitarist, Dan Donegan, is better utilized than on previous albums. Not only that, but the album seems to have a sleek flow to it that probably comes from the fact that the members of Disturbed
seem to mesh better now than before.
Of course, this album does have it's share of problems.
I'll start with the tone. Throughout the album, the songs take a rather samesey tone; they don't seem to differ all that drastically from one another. I know I just mentioned that the atmosphere is more consistent, but I'll say that it IS possible to maintain a consistent atmosphere without having to make all the songs have the same tone (listen to Dsiturbed's debut album The Sickness
and you'll see what I mean). Now, keep in mind that while the songs do have a sort of samesy-ness to them, they aren't completely monotonous and while the album does get a tad boring here and there, it isn't horribly boring. Now, I can say that even the tone itself has its flaws. There isn't as much oomph or power in this album as in The Sickness
or 10,000 Fists, which kinda breaks down what Disturbed
is about. It's my understanding that Disturbed
is meant to be a kind of impowering comfort to people with problems (can anyone say 'teenage demographic'?), and this album just doesn't deliver that. The power isn't nearly as prevalent as it used to be, and the feeling of being able to break through a brick wall is few and far between. Of course you could say that Disturbed
is trying new things. They're going for a different approach. I can totally understand that; one of my favorite bands (Empyrium
) used to be black metal, but they went folk, and the transition worked perfectly. This transition is a little shakier, and the emotional strength isn't really there. I will say that this album isn't as heavy as previous Disturbed
albums, but that doesn't mean that the music can't have emotional punch. Overburdened is one of Disturbed
's slowest songs, but it has more emotional goodies than most other songs by them. Where is that sort of thing here? It feels left out and forgotten.
is song structure.
I've always regarded structure to be Disturbed
's biggest flaw. I think that if they really went innovative on structure, they'd improve drastically as a band. But you may be wondering what I have against their structure. Well, it's extremely run-of-the-mill. It's the radio-friendly verse-chorus-verse-chorus-climax-chorus pattern. Like we've never heard it before. Worse still, more and more emphasis is put into a long and catchy chorus, and now the chorus eats up and consumes Disturbed
's songs. In earlier albums, they knew how to use a chorus...WITHOUT having it take up 70% of the song. The chorus and verse worked together and weaved into each other in a nice way, and both the chorus and verse were important. In Indestructible
, all the emphasis is put into the chorus, and the verse seems to be skimmed over. See, when a song is 70% chorus, you get a lot of marketability, and a lot of people will go around with a lackluster chorus kicking around in their head all day, eventually returning home to listen to more Disturbed
. It's a nice little trick, but it lacks substance. It lacks creativity. I think the band could easily follow more advanced song structures, and they could (and should) throw off the cheap song structures that they've been doing for the past while. And
let me say that having every chorus presented in the same way, the same Ostinato
, gets boring. I'm trying as hard as I can not to keep referencing Tool
, but I have to do it here. Look at Tool
's two-part song Parabol/Parabola. In ten minutes, the chorus is presented four times, and each time it's given a different twist, a different vibe, that coincides with where the song is going, hence, SONG PROGRESSION. About six tenths of the songs in Indestructible
don't seem to really go anywhere, and don't really progress much past the verse-chorus pattern I mentioned before, making a lot of the album seem blasé and uninspired.
Now, let's talk about a few songs in detail.
. As in Ten Thousand Fists
, the title song comes up first, and it's designed to be the song to get you pumped, to get you singing along enthusiastically. Not to mention this is a great song to play live. Every Disturbed
fan knows the chorus of this song off by heart, and you better Believe
plays this live, practically everyone in the crowd will be screaming that chorus. It fills a concert hall, for sure. As I said before, the chorus takes up much of this song, but being as it is the first track, that's forgivable. The song has a little bit of a watered-down low-key tone to it, making it easily accessibe for people who haven't heard Disturbed
before. In short, the song is meant to catch the ears of potential fans.
. Probably my favorite song off Indestructible
. Starts up with a really nice winding riff, and right fro the start I could tell it was gonna be a standout. It has a dynamicism to it, an EPICNESS to it that other songs on here don't even compare to. It's quite dark, it has a good menacing feeling, and best of all... THE CHORUS ISN'T ALL CONSUMING! Yeah, the verse holds just as much water as the chorus, and that makes the song seem way more solid than any of the others. I don't 100% like the lead-in to the chorus (the part where Draiman says 'let my armour fall again'), as it sounds a little cheesy, but other than that, great song. The guitars and drums are particularly good in this one; there's a wild and awesome solo, and the drums are really well-played. They sound tribal, really heavy, and they have a great variety to them. I only wish they were higher in the production for this song.
. For those that don't know this, Perfect Insanity
is an old, old Disturbed
song. I think it's actually the first song Disturbed
I had heard the original many times. It was nitty-gritty balls to the wall agressive, like getting smacked in the face with a 2 by 4. It kinda has that tone that classic mosh pit faves like 'Bodies
' by Drowning Pool
' by Powerman 5000
has. Draiman's voice is wild and undisciplined, but it's really heavy. Now, the new version on Indestructible
doesn't stand up to the original much. It's quite glossy and watered down, and I get the feeling that it has boundaries, like it's almost afraid of going too far with the heaviness and losing its catchiness. That
's another thing, it's absurdly catchy. The only thing improved about it is the guitar solo. There was a solo in both, but the solo in the original was a few sustain notes on guitar that I could play with my eyes closed. The solo in the new one is much more technically involved, and fast to boot. Other than the guitar solo, the original Perfect Insanity
So that's Indestructible
for you. It has its ups and downs, its good moments and its bad ones, so it's a passable album. Disturbed
has put out better in the past, for sure, but up to this point, Indestructible
's most instrumentally involved album.
To me, Indestuctible is like a super-sexy supermodel. Marketable, attractive, and you'll like it at first, but deep down there isn't much to it. There isn't much intelligence, and there isn't anything beneath the surface. While no song on here is inherently bad, there isn't much that stands out. Sure, Indestructible
does have the odd song that's pretty good (like Facade, The Night
, or The Curse
, and to a lesser extent, Torn
), there just isn't enough to make this album a great. The good songs are few and far between, and I get rather bored at some points, most notably the stretch of time between The Night
and The Curse
, but I'm never at the point where I'm praying for the album to end. Indestructible
is a good album, plain and simple. It's not bad, but it isn't great either.