Sound — 10
This is a one of a kind album. Why? Because it is one of the only cd's to top the charts without any airplay or advertising. Recorded in only six weeks, this was Pantera's heaviest venture to date. And as the leaders of the second wave of thrash they had to pull yet another rabbit out of the hat. Which they did. Obviously. It was a task and a half though. They had to at least match an album that many artists say is the most inspirational album. We start with 'Strength Beyond Strength' 10 seconds in you can tell that this is gonna make your ears seriously bleed. Then 'Becoming' with it's lightning fast double-kicks and many moments of whammy pedal/bar abuse provide their most original title to date. '5 Minutes Alone' is one of the less impressivwe tracks, but still enough to beat the crap out of most competitors. Then they're bona fide hit 'I'm Broken' which boasts some of the Dime's coolest riffing to date (incidentally, he wrote it the morning after one of his trademark benders.) Then 'Good Friends And A Bottle Of Pills', which really makes no sense to me. 'Slaughtered' brings along some more ass-whipping, the the cool intro to 'Hard Lines, Sunken Cheeks' comes in followed by some wah abuse. quite a lot of the same, until the final track, a cover of the sab's chillout groove 'Planet Caravan' a well executed cover, with phil definitely bringing his own feel to it. A couple of ruts, but not enough to Deny it A.
Lyrics — 10
Phil's vocals are very powerful for this record, on full blast up until the final track. But as usual the dirty lyrics fit the dirty music. Covering stuff such as revenge (Becoming), adultery (good friends) and general rebellion.
Overall Impression — 10
Some would argue this is their best piece of work. With songs like 'I'm Broken' and 'Becoming' raping your ear drums, this is hardly lacklustre. If you like metal, buy it. It really is that simple. But I advise you buy 'Vulgar...' before dealing with this onslaught.