Sound — 7
The first review of this album was awful and told you absolutely nothing about the album, so my goal is to write a decent review of this album. "Snuff the Punk" is the first album from Payable On Death better known as P.O.D. released in 1994 on Rescue Records, much like their second release "Brown," "Snuff the Punk" was re-mastered and released again with different artwork. The release features 11 tracks and clocks in just shy of 45 minutes in length. In the early days, P.O.D. did Metallica and Slayer covers at parties, is directly influenced by those days. A number of the riffs sound like they came right out of the "Reign in Blood" or "Show No Mercy Days" of Slayer.
The album begins with the intro track titled "Coming Back." It is a smooth intro to the album with clean guitars and (what sounds to me) a lead bass riff. Leading in with the bass is a cool touch in my opinion and is something I really never appreciated until recently. This album is meant to be taken in as a whole, not only from track to track but all 4 pieces really work well done musically. Track 3 "Let the Music Do the Talking" is a whirlwind of things, but in a good way. This track let's you know how the rest of the album is going to sound. The guitars are sludgy, drums are fast (plus really odd timing), and audible funk bass all behind Sonny's rock vocals. "Can You Feel It?" is 100% a Slayer influenced song; it begins very slow and sludgy but almost without notice shifts gears into a slaughter of sludge and drums. This track also features a breakdown with a guitar riff sounding like a mellow "Raining Blood" before every except Traa Daniels' bass and Sonny's vocals all to pick back up and finish fast and strong. The closing song "Whose in this House?" puts the cap on this album in an awesome way. It starts out heavy, then almost without notice changes direction entirely into a rap/hip hop break only to get groovy and heavy again.
Lyrics — 8
Lyrics of not only this album, but the entire P.O.D. catalog is an interesting mix of rap inspired lyrics delivered in a rock fashion. Songs like "Draw the Line" and "Let the Music Do the Talking" are an excellent example of this. This is an excerpt from "Let the Music Do the Talking" and it has an interesting group vocal following the main line:
"Now it's obvious to see that we're dope
-- We're dope
Confusing your mid with this flow you can't cope
What you're gonna do when you're faced with my crew
With the game that is true there's no hope
Why do you try to front, you know that my God is so hard
Taking out you chumps is just a walk in the park
Keep your lips shut with all your Hawking and Squaking
No need for words, we let the music do the talking."
Like P.O.D. future releases, the lyrics are all religiously charged, full of references to God and Jesus. The idea behind the opening track "He's Coming Back" is strictly about the second coming of Christ. The guys are not afraid to write from their hearts and have a positive message to portray. Artists with faith often times dismiss it or dance around it in no uncertain terms, but these guys are straight up and unashamed of their faith.
Overall Impression — 8
What I think could have really helped this album in a good way is a little different take on production. Granted, the band recorded this on a very small label and probably didn't have a load of money to throw at it. If the vocals we're mixed a little better, I wouldn't have problems giving this section a higher rating. On the other hand, the stripped down and raw vocals do portray a certain kind of emotion and mood that a lot of people would appreciate. The guitar sounds, although very intriguing and interesting are sometimes lost in the mix. Also the band members were really young and their age and music tastes at the time definitely show through in a big way. West coast rap and thrash metal definitely co-exist in this album. My favorite part of the album is how you can clearly hear Traa Daniels' bass. He is definitely in the forefront of the sound, not just blending in or matching guitar riffs. If I lost the album or it was taken I wouldn't have a problem buying it again, but I'd really try to find a CD version somewhere and find the remixed release just to see if it boosts the value and sound.