Sound — 6
I first started listening to A Perfect Circle when I saw Constantine. The song in the scene where he goes to the underground bar/club, and it's like a red light, presumably like Hell, caught my ear for some reason, and I looked up the lyrics. I read the lyrics, got the name, and watched the video. Instantly, I was hooked by this songs heavy riffs and melodic vocals that managed to stay haunting from start to finish. I learned Maynard's name that day, and it didn't stay with me until I listened to 10,000 Days. I did a little research, found the names were the same, and instantly started listening to APC. In my opinion, APC is most well known for their interesting music, the music being haunting, with lots of melodic background pianos, and the subtle guitar that sort of drives the song into the deep end. The most famous contribution being, of course, Maynard's voice. The voice of a fallen angel, managing to be so heavy that it makes Metallica look like pansies (no offense, I love Metallica) and staying so beautiful, it makes Charlotte Church look like a whore. Again.
Lyrics — 7
Maynard never ceases to amaze me with his lyrics. They're mostly about War and how the country has gone insane with it's constant rush for arms, and it's deep commitment to war. Against, not for of course. They (the lyrics) range from outright furiosity to whining sarcasm, to malevolent sneering. Maynard's voice sounds so perfect amidst everything else going on, and it's amazing because it sounds so out of place sometimes, but in the meantime, it glides with the song, and takes you on a ride you'll never forget.
Overall Impression — 9
01. Annihilation - the moment you put this CD on, or the headphones in, or start up the car, this song grabs you with Maynard's chant-like whispering. This song actually scares the crap out of my 13 year old sister. The song builds, starting with a glockenspeil, and then adding different elements along the way, the same chant progressing, growing ever more threatening. I love Maynard! 02. Imagine - the song starts off with low piano, and then Maynard's voice kicks in, singing about what it would be like if there wasn't a heaven or hell, if there wasn't a country. The song picks up with something that sounds like a violin, and then some bass, and Maynard harmonizing with himself. It's another cynical view on society. 03. (What's So Funny 'bout) Peace, Love And Understanding? - I hope your iPod can handle this songs title. This song is sort of a ballad that leaves you not wanting to stand still. The guitar's flat notes add a special something to this song, and the song keeps picking up as it goes along, something nearly every song has in common on this CD. Basically a mockery of all things human made. 04. What's Going On - a gorgeous song with reverbed vocals, a slow driving bongo-esque drum beat, and a theme about war murdering everyone. Maynard, if you haven't figured out this late in the CD, is against war. 05. Passive - the CD's single, and for a good reason! It starts out with some guitar that, for Tool fans, might remind you of Schism a little bit. The bass drives this entire song from start to finish with an interesting riff. Basically, Maynard is describing how this girl dissapoints him a lot, despite the fact that he has a terminal disease. The song builds up again, this time in volume, starting with the Schism-style intro guitar, and then escalating with Maynard's voice, an awesome drum and bass beat, and then going back down, then back up a notch, back down, back up 2 notches and so on. Maynard never ceases to amaze. 06. Gimme Gimme Gimme - this song is really one of the most interesting tracks simple because it seems out of place. It starts off with Maynard howling into the mic, reminding me personally of Marilyn Manson. In fact this entire song sounds like Marilyn Manson. Heavy, and kind of sad. It's got a melancholy feel to it. Kind of makes you want to frown in sympathy. 07. People Are People - creepy, creepy song. Starting immediatly with some keyboard, and just some annoying snare patterns, it goes on with Maynard sounding different, and the keyboards and drums giving an overall haunted house feel to this. Tool's classing meter comes into play with the chorus, which begins with some weird lalalala type things that Maynard felt some neccessary need to put into there. The chorus is hard to time, unless your experianced with it. Kind of a snarl at war. Again. 08. Freedom Of Choice - a good enough song, starts off kind of pretty, but not a slow pretty. Going into the chorus, Maynard's just kind of wailing here. Not much to say about this song, except it doesn't really sound like anything else on the CD. 09. Let's Have A War - this might remind you of a song on Tony Hawk's American Wasteland. I think From Autumn To Ashes ripped this off. Anyway, so Maynard is really sarcastic in this song. Talking about how we should have a war because America desperatly needs one for "money". 10. Counting Bodies Like Sheep To The Rhythm Of The War Drums - a snarl and a growl at humanity. The title alone gives it all away. Maynard yells at lot at the beginning. The drum and bass once again rule this song, with Maynard occasionally yelping. It's a good song, don't get me wrong, but a very angry one. He does sing in the song, it just takes a few seconds. 11. When The Levee Breaks - I get so tired of answering this question, so read this closely. Yes It is a Zeppelin cover. No it does not sound like it, but it is more of a tribute than a cover. It's an extremely mellow beautiful song. The chorus is gorgous. It's just basically some piano and drums, with Maynard sounding like an angel. And I mean an angel when I say it, he sounds incredible. Lots of vocal overlays. 12. Fiddle And The Drum - my personal favorite song out of all of them. Entirely Maynard just overlaying his vocals, making a beautiful, no gorgeous song with a lot of vocal harmonies and vocal chords. Pretty much just asking America "Why? Why are you being so hurtful? Can I please help you find the way again?" (note: those aren't the lyrics). I love this song. It's absolutely amazing, and truely shows Maynard is more than just an average singer. Definatly buy the CD, but even if you don't like the other songs, this song is worth the entire 12 bucks you're going to spend on it. If you spend any more than 12 bucks, buy it at Newgrounds Comics, or Best Buy. Anywhere else, and you're not getting a good deal.