Sound — 8
First things first, STOP COMPARING THIS ALBUM TO MER DE NOMS! Listeners must remember that when Billy and Maynard set out on working on the music for the album, there intent was to create a certain mood and take you on a trip to explore the darker realms of the human psyche. That being said, that is why the majority of the album tends to keep it's mellow ambient like sound, which by the way I happen to love. Frankly, I think thirteenth step does a better job of creating an overall mood than Mer De Noms does. All in all it is another great album from APC. However, if you do not want to put yourself in a certain mood for the length of an entire album, DO NOT GET THIS CD! You would be selling yourself short and missing out on a lot.
Lyrics — 10
Once again, Reverend Maynard has come through with thought provoking and emotion probing lyrics. I find it fascinating how he never ceases to make me think, to explore myself. On Thirteenth Step, Maynard once again keeps an air of mystique about his lyrics. Leaving it up to the listener to figure out the songs for himself. If you don't like to think, don't get this cd, you might end up hurting yourself. Plain and simple, if you like processed heartless metal/rock which does not require you to question yourself and your actions, then you will hate this album. Maynard does not intend for his music to be heard by everyone, just those who will take the time to give it the repsect it desereves.
Overall Impression — 8
Overall, Thirteenth Step is a great album, completely succeeding in conveying the mood the artists set out to present. Once again, if you do not want to take the time to really enjoy and actually "Listen" to music, then you will hate this album. This is not another Mer De Noms album and in fact I think it succeeds in trying to be the younger brother with the weird personality entirely opposite than that of it's elder. In conclusion, I highly recommend this album to people who have the patience and fine tuned ear for good solid heart felt music.