Released: Aug 17, 2010
Genre: Industrial rock, alternative metal
Label: Rocket Science Ventures, Nuclear Blast
Number Of Tracks: 10
The band have stretched themselves to make an album that not only smacks in the face, it gives your neck a good throttling.
The Trouble With Angels
UG Team, on august 25, 2010 1 of 4 people found this review helpful
Sound: Bring up the band Filter as a topic of conversation with some of today's die-hard listeners and the almost forgotten single "Take A Picture" will come up as subject number one. Society adores latching onto 90s' rock gems with soft, heartwarming innards, but is it a shame to solely associate an artist with a song that was released almost 11 years ago? The Trouble With Angels says "yes".
Swaying away from the jangly guitar dancing with spacey vocals, the Cleveland rock band emphasize their fifth-disc as a comeback album, taking industrial rock and smothering it in acidic chord anthems and rocket-fueled screeches. The transition from verse to chorus runs smooth with charismatic drumming backing gritty dirt-in-my-nails riffs ("Absentee Father", "Down With Me") that would put a smile on your creepy, grunge-loving uncle. "Catch A Falling Knife" opens with grime, launches into a crash of frenzied instruments and after easing into your conscience, it takes it's collar off for just a second, before easing back into it's comfort zone.
The addition of guitarist Rob Patterson (Otep, Korn) and indie bassist Phil Buckman contribute a lot to the album's production, making Anthems For The Damned a rough release. Such a loud and clear sound makes one wonder why Filter aren't touring with other industrial heavyweights, but the answer to that speculation is clear when you trace the record back to the frontman. // 8
Lyrics: "When I wake up, I can't stay up, there's no time for hope / Mr. Hung-out, Mr. Torn-up looking for the phone" sneers lead vocalist Richard Patrick on the opener "The Inveitable Relapse", doing his best Trent Reznor impression with a pen. The songwriting wrapped in industrial rock is a highlight of The Trouble With Angels but the trouble with the way Patrick presents his work is the main conflict. There's imagination, there's an attempt to be a true artist, but there's a trap door right underneath his feet.
Instead of providing a definition for the band of himself as a singer, Patrick pitches two characters voices against each other throughout the entire release. As an example, "No Love" showcases the vocalist releasing his loyality to Chino Moreno and Deftones while swerving into power-tripped wails Avenged Sevenfold'sM. Shadows would applaud (all of this occurs without a seatbelt on). Patrick shows no signs of slowing down the tribute-night spectacle, latching onto a complex voice hybrid that erases whatever voice you remember associating with Filter. The alternative rock faithful may not mind, but playing copy-cat isn't exactly the way you want to assist your new found sound. // 6
Overall Impression: Deftones' release earlier this year strapped you into a rollercoaster with no brakes and even though some want to believe Filter do that with their latest album, it's not true whatsoever. The Trouble With Angels points out all the right angles the band took to restablish themselves but it also highlights their music's negative aspects with a bright, pink neon marker. Despite the confidence discovered in turning up the volume knob, a brash solution would be to threaten Richard Patrick's position but even that's an unnecessary thing to do at this point in time. Especially since this is Filter's second attempt at making a comeback album. // 6
The Trouble With Angels
unregistered, on august 25, 2010 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sound: After 2008's politically charged 'Anthems for the Damned', Filter's intense frontman Richard Patrick promised a return to the more hard-edged, angst-ridden darkness of their finest works 'Short Bus' and 'Title of Record'. And indeed, '...Angels' is a real revelation, Patrick's jet engine growl fiercely screeching as the bass is pummeled over some furious drum beats. However, pleasingly, Filter always know not to be too heavy, and the shards of melody that bounce between the isolated bass lines give the album a vaguely Deftones - 'Diamond Eyes' quality. // 8
Lyrics: Lyrically, Patrick is admirably the equivalent of a method actor - dark moments from his past are remembered in the form of song, and perhaps these memories give him the power to sing with such vehement rage and simmering anger. '...Angels' throws the baby out with the bathwater lyrically, especially on the album's finest track, 'Catch A Falling Knife', where Patrick states 'I have spent my life in here / in your home, but my hell.' And 'Mom and Dad, what happened? / I woke up and you were missing.' Suburban frustrations and dark family matters have frequently cropped up in Patrick's work, but the beauty is the ambigious nature of the songs, as they leave enough guesswork to provide multiple meanings. 'Absentee Father', 'No Love' and the title track could all be to do with dark relationships or perhaps a higher power, but Patrick's gift is to let the listener in on the record, and let them read the interpretation. When he's at his most direct, though, on the gob-smacking '...Knife', it's almost beautiful. // 10
Overall Impression: Fans of Filter will be not be disappointed, as the three strong openers - '...Relapse', 'Drug Boy' and 'Absentee Father' - all hark back to the heady days of 'Hey Man Nice Shot', particularly '...Relapse's' isolated bassline and diamond hard riffwork. It's also evident Patrick couldn't have made a record as powerful as this back in 2008, as he simply wasn't this confident. His bullishness shines through the emotionally draining lyrics, the fiery guitars and the pounding drums. The band have stretched themselves to make an album that not only smacks in the face, it gives your neck a good throttling. // 8
The Trouble With Angels
Baker9490, on october 15, 2010 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sound: First off, Filter's two previous releases, The Amalgamut and Anthems For The Damned were a little less than what I'd expect after Title of Record. So, I was a little less pumped for their newest release, The Trouble With Angels. Now, I call upon myself as guilty of underestimating something. Filter have come back to dominate their prevoius releases with vigor and life that hasn't been seen since Short Bus and Title of Record. But yet, this record sounds nothing like the previous releases. It's something completely on its own, and in my opinion, is how a record should be made. Going back to your roots is just another way of saying, "I'm only good at making one type of music." which is a sad truth for some artists. But Filter throws the middle finger to that statement. // 9
Lyrics: The lyrics seem a little more forced and easier to understand on this record. There isn't that much of a feeling of mystery in the lyrics. Especially in the song, "The Inevitable Relapse" the lyrics tend to just...propel themselves forward with immediate translation. Which isn't a bad thing, it gives the feeling of relation a little more welcome. But, on the other hand, it kind of kills the fun in decoding lyrics themselves. Richard Patricks singing is just as familiar as it was 15 years ago on Short Bus, so I have nothing to complain about that aspect. But, sometimes, I wish he'd ditch the Chris Cornell screams, and instead, try some real gutteral and more vicious growls and chants. This would probably give more presence and co-operation with the music itself. // 7
Overall Impression: Like I said before, this album isn't anything like Filter's previous releases. More or less, this album kicks all that is ass. And yet, at the same time, demands that you give it a chance to listen to. This is a definite recommendation for all fans of Industrial, Hard Rock, and Metal. // 9