Friday, October 23, 2015

Black Tide - Chasing Shadows (2015)

You guys cannot understand how afraid I have been about listening to this album, like really, REALLY afraid. Let me tell you about the background of this fear, Black Tide burst out into the music scene in 2008 with the album "Light From Above", an amazing album that mixed old school speed metal with more modern elements. It was my jam for several years, and I could listen to songs like "Shockwave", "Black Abyss", "Light From Above", and "Warriors of Time" for hours. Then came the much awaited follow up, the 2011 release "Post Mortem". I freaking hate that album, they completely removed the old school part of their music, and became just like any other stupid mainstream rock band from that time. Some songs had a little redeeming quality to them (like "That Fire" and "Let It Out"), but most of them was just trash. It wasn't even the same band anymore.

Before entering "Chasing Shadows", I made sure to pray to every god like creature that the album would turn out good. I prayed to God, Allah, Buddah, Spongebob, Arceus, and even the three Egyptian God cards from Yu-Gi-Oh, just so the band would return to the kick ass music they performed in "Light From Above", with soaring vocals, insane guitar play, and playful lyrics. I even got a glimmer of hope back when I saw that their old logo was back, maybe there was a god after all, hearing my prayers.

Sadly, the grim truth stared right at my face after just one spin of the album. This album takes Black Tide further down the pit they have dug for them self, a pit they most likely will never escape. I am stricken over how tame everything is, from the overall presentation to the lyrics ("Sex Is Angry" is a big contender in the "worst lyrics" category when I summarize 2015). The album cover may be 70% pure darkness, but the inside is all warm and cuddly, and not in a good way.

The thing that pisses me off the most is just how weak the band has become. Sure, they can nail a solo here and there, but the song writing is so bland and uninspiring that I just want to beat the crap out of it. There is no bite, no fire, and no fight what so ever. And what happened to the singer Gabriel Garcia? Is this really the same guy that screamed his heart out in "Light From Above"? I can understand that his voice has gone through some changes (since he and the rest of the band was really young during the recording of "Light From Above"), but this cannot be blamed by puberty.

Now, I know what you are thinking, isn't there some way that they have matured and evolved their sound, and do you not encourage bands to evolve? Yes I do, but there has to be a good reason for the band to evolve their sound, and most importantly, the evolution has to go smoothly so the core of the fan base is not lost. Black Tide has failed miserably in that part, changing waaaaaaaaaay too fast for their own good. It is practically a new band that is presented in "Chasing Shadows".

So, are there some redeeming quality to this album? Yes, the guitar work deserves some praise, hitting a couple of nice solos scattered around the album. It is the only part of the band that is consistent and trust worthy. I also guess that the production is not that bad, sounding fairly polished. So the album is not the worst piece of shit I have ever heard, but you cannot polish a turd and sell it as gold.

With the release of "Chasing Shadows", I have officially lost all respect and hope for Black Tide. The guys are still young, but the fact that the band has changed so drastically and is still releasing records via Interscope Records (whom also have Limp Bizkit, Nine Inch Nails and Lady Gaga (?!)) makes me believe that they have left their metal roots behind them. "Chasing Shadows" is just god awful, a fluffy album with some interesting guitar work, but nothing else that is even close to enjoyable. In conclusion, there is no god, listening to our prayers, and the youthful passion that characterized Black Tide is long gone, and so is the awesome music.

Song barely worthy of recognition: Guidelines

Rating: 1,5/10 Predators

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