Sound — 7
The four boys are back again, and with a decent bang. The Peoria rockers released their latest studio album 'The New Game' in late October. Their technical style hasn't shone through as much in this album compared to their previous releases, but the band seem to be evolving with some former weaknesses becoming strengths. For an album written almost three years ago now, it took a while for the 'Vayne to spill out some information on this album, with no real build up about it. But with good reason as with the album came a competition that lasted over 11 weeks, with the major prize being a VIP laminate for life to all Mudvayne shows. 'The New Game' is the perfect title for the album as Mudvayne have definitely changed since the L.D.50 days of 2000, whether that's for better or worse is up to your thoughts on the album. Most fans of Mudvayne will be happy to know that in their recent tour supporting the album, the band have started up the face paint and on stage antics again, Chad Gray and Greg Tribbett being the most notible of the four to do so, with chad sporting either a monkey suit, clown suit and even the old blood covered overalls again. With all that said, after a solid few months of listening to the album, I will give you my insight on the latest release from the four boys.
Lyrics — 7
Each song seems to be unique in their own way with all of them different from the next. The band has definitely become closer over the years and that is reflecting through their music as this album sounds more solid and more together than previous releases. 01.Fish Out Of Water: the opening track of the album is certainly one of the better ones, after a antagonisingly strange and seemingly long intro courtesy of Greg, Chad comes in with possibly the best scream on the record and from there the song just takes off. The lyrics reflect someone who has seemingly betrayed Chad Gray reflected in the lyrics such as "Buy my soul, so you can sell me I don't need this, I don't need you" everything just fits in this song and makes it definitely one of the better tracks on the album. 8 02.Do What You Do: the first single off the new album and it hovered around radio stations for a while as it is simply just a solid song. Most fans were stunned when the song hit the 2:10 mark, for the first time in 10 years Greg Tribbett shocked us all with a guitar solo ('Fear' off of 'The Beginning Of All Things To End' was the first guitar solo ever in a Mudvayne song). Strong, but simple. 7 03.A New Game: the 'semi title track' is the bombshell for me, it hits you with a strong riff to open, and some mad drums and the always astonishing bass from Ryan. Then Chad comes in with his most agressive performance on the album, with some dark lyrics resembling somewhat of a serial killer that's almost paeodophile-like. But it all adds up everything seems to work on this song, it's a mix of the old and new and it just blows you away. 10 04.Have It Your Way: another solid hit out, it just reflects the bands ability to work together well. Lyrics are out pointing the finger at 'The Man'. Good on all levels, but not great. 6.5 05.A Cinderella Story: this song seems to be all about Chad Gray, it's just some of his best work, lyrically and vocally, on display, but with the other three behind him giving the song the extra push. 7 06.The Hate In Me: one of the heavier songs on the album, music wise this is one of my favourite songs on the album, lot of fun to listen to and obviously is a song to get the pit moving. 7 07.Scarlet Letters: this song just doesnt't work for me, definitely one of my least favourite songs off the album, it's just seems like it's a filler song, but it's somehow rigid enough with the rumour around that this is going to be the second single. 5 08.Dull Boy: why this makes the album, I don't know. It was on 'By The People, For The People' and that's where it should have stayed. But nonetheless, catchy and good fun to sing along to. 6 09.Same Ol': absolutely amazing, insane stuff from the boys. Everyone plays their part, great song in everyway. Suprisingly the repetative lyrics work. Great song to blast out in the car. 9 10.Never Enough: the most mellow of all the songs on the album, very sad and meaningful lyrics about not measuring up to expectations and ultimately being 'Never Enough'. Again Mudvayne somehow make it work and to a great result. 8 11.We The People: this song would of hit all the right notes if the chorus was as heavy as the verses. Once you hear that first verse you immediatley think this is on for the pit, until the chorus, which just slows the momentum of the song. The lyrics are good on the other hand, with the song aiming to get the followers to rise against the opressers and "stick it to the man". 6
Overall Impression — 7
This is a very, very solid album in many ways. It's obviously a big step behind the likes of L.D.50 but don't get me wrong, by no means is this a bad album. It's Mudvayne but it isnt... It's just different and that is what we have come to expect from the Peoria outfit. My favourite thing about the new album is the inclusion of guitar solos, all the other members have expressed their talents in previous albums, so I didn't mention Ryan and Matt much, not to say they don't go un-noticed as they are outstanding as always, but this album was an massive step up for Greg and has come through pretty convincing, for some people guitar solos don't work for Mudvayne, but in my opinion, it turned out pretty darn good. The songs to listen to; 'Fish Out Of Water', 'A New Game', 'Same Ol'' and 'Never Enough'. If the album were stolen, there is no doubt in my mind that I wouldn't go buy the album again, especially the deluxe edition which comes in a make-shift case file which is pretty awesome.