LibertadFeatured review by: UG Team, on july 03, 2007 21 of 23 people found this review helpful
Sound: While it seemed like Velvet Revolver and Guns N' Roses (Axl's newest version, at least) were in the throws of a competition to get their latest releases on the shelves for the past few months, it was evident that Slash and the boys still have about a 10-year handicap -- and would still win handily, of course. It wasn't necessarily inner turmoil that really caused the delay in the Velvet Revolver album, but rather it had more to do with just getting everybody together with a reliable producer (Brendan O'Brien). Once that obstacle was overcome, the riff-machine that is Velvet Revolver was able to write a set of riff-heavy rock tracks that should satisfy anyone missing the blues-driven, ballsy rock that reigned in much of the '70s and '80s.
Libertad delivers much of what you'd expect from the supergroup, and that's not such a bad thing in an age where bands thrive on tossing around words like maturing and experimenting when they go into the studio. Almost every song begins with Slash's grinding guitar riffs and is rounded out by a solid rhythm section. While Libertad never reaches the songwriting level of an album like Appetite For Destruction, it still features some excellent rock tracks and many classic solos by the incomparable Slash. In fact, much in the vein of November Rain, one of the most memorable solos comes in the band's cover of the E.L.O. ballad Can't Get It Out Of My Head.
The band chose a fitting new single with She Builds Quick Machines, which starts off with a guitar-driven intro similar to Slither, which was not so coincidentally also the first single off the first record. That riff pretty much makes the song, and thankfully Slash doesn't just jump to chords during the verses. You hear a pared-down version of that intro riff much of the way through and up until the breakdown, which is effectively slowed down to make way for a killer Slash solo. The album actually does, however, feature a few songs that get a bit chord-heavy and repetitive, and inevitably Slash always saves the day with his solos.
The rhythm section is exceptionally tight in Velvet Revolver, with American Man the best example of the talent. The song draws you in pretty quickly with an intro that doesn't put the guitars in the spotlight. A grooving bass line from Duff McKagan and some beautifully mellow percussion from drummer Matt Sorum is at the forefront of American Man, with the song quickly building into a climactic chorus. While the chorus does get a bit monotonous (this lyrics trend happens in more than a few songs) with vocalist Scott Weiland singing, Yes, I am the American Man over and over again, there are enough highlights elsewhere that it can be overlooked. // 9
Lyrics: It's hard not to get distracted by the repeating choruses supplied by Weiland, but the verses do usually feature quality lyrics along the way. The track The Last Fight seems like it could be easily inspired by the ups and downs of Weiland's marriage, and that personal slant makes it an interesting listen. He sings, Town heals all of the burned out bridges; Filled with nothing more than misery; I wear the mask of the embattled son; Trying to beg for something to believe. It seems like Weiland is doing a little soul-searching in The Last Fight, and it's a big change from most of the lyrics, which are your usual rock faire.
There are a few cringe-worthy lyrics on Libertad, with Just Sixteen being one of the main offenders. Weiland sings, Standin' in the courthouse; In front of every child; She said "Your Honor I plead to the crime of being satisfied. The line about the crime of being satisfied does seem a little bit much, but there have been lots and lots of rock songs that have tread similar ground. Of course, with a title like Just Sixteen it does seem like we're asking for trouble anyway. // 8
Overall Impression: Libertad won't necessarily be placed on a pedestal like some of the releases in the bandmates' catalogues, but it's still a worthwhile purchase. Slash is at the top of his game, and if you're a fan of the curly-tressed guitarist then you'll get giddy just hearing him pull out the wah. Weiland's vocals are strong, but never do quite have the unique quality that -- dare I say -- Axl does, or at least did. Even so, Weiland is still able to deliver some beautiful harmonies along the way and can hold his own against the grinding guitars that fill pretty much every track.
Barring a couple tracks, most of the songs on Libertad could land themselves regular airplay -- which for a rock band with a dangerous image might be the kiss of death. But the bandmates in Velvet Revolver are likely way past having to endure peer pressure in the rock world and don't mind reaping in a few more fans with the release of Libertad. While it would have been nice to hear a little bit more edginess at times, the band still has succeeded at writing tight rock songs that will appeal to a wide audience. // 8
unregistered, on july 03, 2007 4 of 12 people found this review helpful
Sound: I have had the honor of getting an early copy of the album so I will post a review for those whom it may concern. This album was some what hard to judge compared to Contraband but here we go. There is defintly more musical influence's on this record. Some of the intro's like on the song, "She Builds Quick Machines" are stong. And in my opinion, a song has to have a strong intro. "Let It Roll" has a great intro to. I have rated the song to the best of my obility. Some of the songs on this album almost have a punky feel, or pop like feel to them. Which isn't a bad thing. But others like, "She Builds Quick Machines," "Just Sixteen," are great up beat rock songs with great intro's. there really isn't much of a story that I can see behind this album. It just seems like a group of guys trying, and completing to make a great rock album. // 7
Lyrics: The thing about Scott (frontman), is that you can't really tell what he is talking about. Like sometimes there videos are completly different than what sounds like there singing. It just doesn't fit sometimes. But on the song "The Last Fight" the lyrics are strong, and really emotionall sounding, he has a good gift for melody. I wish he would use his voice better. He is definitly albe to do more than he did I think. // 6
Overall Impression: It almost sounds like some "Snakepit" stuff (Slash's band). But There really isn't any other album it sounds like. it's got it's own thing going on. In my opinion, the strongest songs are, "She Builds Quick Machines," "The Last Fight," "For A Brother," and "Just Sixteen." I love this album, cause it is really melodic. It's got great solos, and guitar work (bass to) drums are great, the vocal melody could be better on some songs, but over all is a great album. If I lost this album, I would go out that same day and get another copy. any music love sould get a copy. // 7
unregistered, on july 04, 2007 4 of 5 people found this review helpful
Sound: The sound and music of this band is just wow! I mean they have some great musicions in their midst. I'm talkin' Slash, the vocalist, drummer, bassist, pretty much just the whole band! I don't think there is a "story" behind the album but Velvet Revolver gave us a great preview. She Builds Quick Machines-Single was the album that gave us all a taste of what was coming. On the album artwork there is a picture of skeleton Slash, skeleton of another former Guns N' Roses artist, and the skeleton of an angel. These characters are uncovering a coin with an angel that says Libertad and Velvet Revolver on the top and bottom of the coin. In just the first song of the album, "Let it Roll" you can easily see how much the band has grown together after only two full albums. // 10
Lyrics: I really actually like the lyrics cause you know what cooler lyrics could you get than talking about how a girl tastes like candy? I mean seriously these guys know how to write good songs with awesome lyrics. If the lyrics tell about something sad, the music is slow and sad. If the lyrics tell about something awesome, the music is awesome (common in most of the songs)! But the lyrics would be nothing if the singer sucked horribly. But, the singer doesn't suck horribly and is actually very good. So I personally rate the lyrics just as high as I would rate the music, a perfect 10! // 10
Overall Impression: Other albums wish they were good enough to compare to this one but they're not! My personal favorites on this album are She Builds Quick Machines, Let it Roll, and Just Sixteen. To sum it all up I love everything about the album with the exception of the slow songs. And yes if it were stolen or lost it is definitly worth buying again! // 10
unregistered, on july 04, 2007 3 of 4 people found this review helpful
Sound: VR mixes the explosive 80's excess with, Scott weilands "Voices" straight out of 94', and a little bit of 70's arena rock. This album is like taking a radio and hurtling it through some kind of time warp, it is different and I like it. It is good old fashioned fun loving rock like I've never heard it before. // 10
Lyrics: Scott really does a solid job of writing here even though he sticks to the classic rock template for subject matter. Still somtimes his lyrics don't make sense to me, but they do to him and fit the music so that is all that matters. Scott's voice is solid throughout the album and I still think he was a great choice for a singer. // 8
Overall Impression: Don't listen to this album expecting Contraband or you will probably hate it. It isn't as balls to the wall hard rock as Contraband, but that is what Contraband a solid collection of hard rock, as an album Libertad is much better it has diversity and a classic sound that I really have fallen in love with. As for the songs being single worthy I say more power to it! This stuff is much better than today's typical radio fodder.
01. Let It Roll - good solid opener, a little short but Slash saves the day with great guitar work.
02. She Mine - singable chorus, great guitar, great song.
03. Get Out The Door - I really like this song, it just has that rock n' roll feel to it, Props to Brendan O' Brien for warping weiland's voice at the end, it freaks me out.
04. She Builds Quick Machines - this was a good choice for a single because it eases you into VR's new sound, it would fit on Contraband, but the new sound is there during the "What you give" part.
05. The Last Fight - this song rocks easily one of the best on the album lyrically. The heir apparent to "Fall To Pieces".
06. Pills Demons & Etc - another great singable song, it's about pills and demons, go figure. Solo is short but good.
07. American Man - this song's chorus reminds me of "The Who". All around solid song I love Slash's guitar work here.
08. Mary Mary - this is a classic anthem to a rock and roll vixen. The Ooh ooh oohs are awesome. It gets in your head and sticks.
09. Just Sixteen - I'm torn here I love the song, but the second verse is disturbingly dirty, still the chorus is great.
10. Can't Get It Out Of My Head - an ELO cover fits the whole feel of this album and VR nails it, Slash burns the place down with his guitar one of the bests.
11. For A Brother - probably about Scotts Bro, and I give him props he gives him a rock song instead of a ballad, and a good one at that. Another great song.
12. Spay - as much as I love this album for some reason I hate this song, easily the worst song here, sounds like a Contraband reject. It's not that bad but it it doesn't come close to the rest of the stuff.
13. Gravedancer - another good ballad, probably the softest and most emotional we will ever hear these guys, I really like it though, and stay tuned for a sweet folky country bonus track afterwards.
If you like rock buy this album immediately it is really good, different, but good. If it were lost or stolen, I would go buy it again and play it just as much. I have heard the whole thing close to four times now and it doesn't get old. Put this and Contraband in a playlist and you are ready for anything! // 10
4.7GB, on july 16, 2007 3 of 4 people found this review helpful
Sound: Libertad doesn't dissapoint in terms of sound, but, it isn't (in my opinion) as good an album as Contraband. I think the band work well together and seem able to bounce off each other. Slash certainly cut the mustard with guitar skills and Weiland sings well. The tracks from the album are as follows:
01. Let It Roll - is a perfect opener to start with. It sounds just like something you'd hear from the '80s during the glam rock era when bands like Motley Crue, Van Halen, and Poison reigned.Both Scott and Slash seem in their comfort zones here, especially with the Slash solo in this song. Though it be short, it's a good opener, and for once, Velvet Revolver sounds more like Velvet Revolver rather than GN'R with Scott Weiland.
02. She Mine - we go a little into a STP type song here with She Mine with lyrics like "I call it love insanity, I call it my reality". Still a good song though, although Slash's solo in this song is short. However, it still doesn't sound like GN'R w/ Scott still. It sounds more like STP with different members other than Scott.
03. Get Out The Door - nothing much to say here except this sounds like another '80s song, just more modern like Let It Roll, but this time it's the negative of Let It Roll. Kinda humorous when Scott says "Like Transformers girl, there's more than meets the eye", I must say.
04. She Builds Quick Machines - their first single from Libertad, She Builds Quick Machines, sounds more like the stuff that VR did in Contraband. But though it has a great Slash solo, the song reallys brings Libertad down. This sounds more like the sludge in Contraband with stupid lyrics that made no sense, like "Ice cold desert snow" and "I can feel it when you pull straight down, I can feel it when they stood their ground." Even the chorus makes no sense! Another problem with this is that it has a sort of how-now-brown-cow rhyme scheme in this song. Really this song is a filler and it really throws off the balance of the album.
05. The Last Fight - now we go to the first of 3 ballads in Libertad. The Last Fight makes a major progression from a ballad like Fall to Pieces. Instead of using hard, chugging riffs, it uses some backing vocals and has a mellow mood to it. A better song than that of SBQM.
06. Pills, Demons, & Etc. - you'd think this would be a darker song, but this is surprisingly up tempo, with a great Slash intro. This is one of the songs that was dedicated to the memory of Michael Weiland and Daniel Sorum. They died during the recording of this album from heroin, and this song talks of the demon drug that killed the brother. Again, it shows a musical progression from Contraband.
07. American Man - Scott takes some time to talk of the modern culture of today in American Man. Nothing much to say here, but an okay song. Kinda dull, but nothing noticiably crap about the song.
08. Mary Mary - it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out who wrote the song or even who it's about. Again, this is one of those songs like that reminds of an '80s glam rock song. Shows a major progression again from Contraband, and this song really shows off Scott's vocal ability. Also, impressive drum opening from Matt.
09. Just Sixteen - this song is like Van Halen's "Hot for Teacher". This song is surprisingly up tempo, and again sounds like another 80s style glam rock song like I've pointed out, like I don't know, a lot? Anyways, this is a very good song, and this is one of the stand out songs that succeeds where Contraband fails and shows signs of a major musical progression.
10. Can't Get It Out Of My Head - the best ballad of I have ever heard from the band, it's even better than You Got No Right in Contraband. I must applaud Slash in this song, this is the best solo I have heard and some of his greatest work ever. Great song.
11. For A Brother - this is the other song dedicated to Michael Weiland & Daniel Sorum. But this seems more heartfelt this time around. Good song, nothing much more to say about this.
12. Spay - again, this is one of the songs that sounds all too familiar to a song from Contraband, Spay sounds more like Dirty Little Thing, but it aims more at the modern Hollywood starlets rather than just at one person with lyrics like "You would rather spite your face than change your life" and it takes a shot at the rappers of today with "The singer sings of diamond things and all excesses". A wonderful song.
13. Gravedancer - a wonderful ending to Libertad. Scott's voice is perfect for this song, and Slash has a great closing solo for this song. But I must say: the country song at the end of this song is kinda humorous. Gravedancer ends like Kitchen Ware & Candy Bars does for STP's Purple. And does anyone know the name of the country song at the end of Gravedancer? Anyways, Gravedancer is a perfect ender. // 9
Lyrics: Although I am not a fan of Scott Weiland his vocal skills are not too shabby to say the least. He blends gruff and smooth vocals well, creating the moods for each song almost perfectly. The first and last songs on the album, Let It Roll & Grave Dancer, are definately Weilands best performances as he get deep into the heart of both songs. Also Pills, Demons, & Etc and For A Brother deserve a mention as these songs are both dedicated to the memory of Michael Weiland & Daniel Sorum, so needless to say Weiland puts his heart into these as well. // 8
Overall Impression: Loaded rhythms, jaw-dropping guitar works, seasoned harmonies, but, I feel they just didn't cut it well enough to blend it into a superb album. I think we all need to realise that we are not going to see these guys create an album anywhere close to Appetite for destruction, and need to stop comparing Velvet revolver to GN'R. Libertad has a sense of aimless purpose, though certain bits were good, it's one of those album that you need time to warm up to. I would but the album again if lost/stolen, but, it is not in my favourites list. // 8
slowhand91, on july 25, 2007 2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Sound: Velvet Revolver's second album Libertad is the much needed kickstart to the modern music industry consisting of untalented, rap, pop, and crybaby emo artists. Libertad is good, hard rock and roll, something we lack nowadays. Slash pumps out solid riffs and solos, some of his best since Appetite, and Duff, Dave, and Matt hold down a tight and punchy rhythm section. Scott's vocals are strong like always, especially on the few slower songs. The sound is more polished than on Contraband, but not to the point of being overproduced. Libertad is the album which the boys start to come into there own sound and not just GN'R meets STP. It does lack some of the hard hitters Contraband had, but is in no way bad. // 10
Lyrics: Scott Wieland has never been Dylan or Lennon but his lyrics are sharp and fit the music well, especially on The Last Fight and Just Sixteen. Most of them are the typical rock fair, hedonism, but that's never a bad thing, especially now, where everybody just cries about losing their girlfriend. // 8
Overall Impression: 01. Let It Roll - a nice strong opener, with some sweet, heavy riffing. Scott's performance stands out and Slash has a short but good solo.
02. She Mine - the song took time to hit me, but since it has it turned out to be pretty good, with a nice catchy chorus. Not one of my fav's but still a great track.
03. Get Out The Door - I really like this one. The guitars and bass have a nice, pulsing rhythm and the chorus is catchy as hell.
04. She Builds Quick Machines - the leadoff single for Libertad and a very strong track. The opening riff is awesome and the band lays back for the verses before blaring back for the antemic chorus and the very sweet breakdown. Also a cool solo by Slash. The lyrics are wierd, but the music more than makes up for it.
05. The Last Fight - the first slow song and it happens to be great. The snare/guitar opening is sweet with great lyrics. A very pretty song most anyone will like.
06. Pills, Demons, And Etc. - this is another short one but it is very cool (especially the backing vocals, Sympathy for the Devil anyone). It has a nice alternative sounding riff.
07. American Man - a good, hard, rock song with a catchy chorus. Not a fav but solid.
08. Mary Mary - this track flows right off American Man with some nice guitar Work from Slash and some cool lyrics.
09. Just Sixteen - I love this song. One of the fastest on the album, with some ripping guitar trade-offs from Slash and Dave. The vocals kick ass and the chorus is one of their best. Great solo too.
10. Cant Get It Out Of My Head - an ELO cover that fits surprising well with the other songs. Nice vocals.
11. For A Brother - this song never stood out to me for some reason. it's not bad and is pretty strong, just not a highlight.
12. Spay - this one is pretty cool. A lot of people don't like it, but I think it has a cool STP like sound.
13. Gravedancer - this one rocks, It's slower like The Last Fight, but has a real haunting sound and an amazing solo from Slash, great closer (not counting the country thing, which is hilarious).
Overall, Libertad is an awesome album, one of the best in a while, with no filler. I'd go buy another one even if it wasn't stolen. // 10
priceless_twirp, on august 06, 2007 2 of 3 people found this review helpful
Sound: I have had a difficult time listening to this album. I found that as an overall record, sonically, it has taken a step backwards both in time and quiality from the truly amazing Contraband. The guitars sounds, riffs and explosivity of some of the songs on contraband were and aggressive punt in the gut, and by comparison Libertad feels more like a cheeky kick up the bum. Not that it doesn't have it's moments. The one song that truly grasps the sound we know and love from VR, "She Builds Quick Machines", is stomper of a rock tune. If only the rest of the album were so. Though songs like "Let It Roll" and "Spay" glimmer of the past tracks such as "Dirty Little Thing" and "Set Me Free" but compared, are sub par. Fortunatly Slash reedems somewhat with as ever superb guitar work on the solo side of things. // 5
Lyrics: Scott Weiland's lyrics are not without their effect, and he has taken much from his carreer and life as a rock star as influence ("Pills, Demons & Etc." being about the loss of his brother to an overdose etc). He also has no problem wailing out the hooks and really selling the song to us. Unfortunaly what he's selling is partially washed up rockers drifing between metal and blues creating a kind of irritaing ambivalence. In my opinion the lyrics in this band have always been secondary to their hard-ass riffs and "blow-your-teeth-out" energy which doesn't appear on this album much. The lyrics are therefore more apparent in this one, which is no bad, like the lyrics. // 7
Overall Impression: It is a shame that VR couldnt carry on the brilliance of Contraband. It would appear that the "Sucker Train" is running out of steam, when it started so strong on the first album. If I were you I would download "She Builds Quick Machines", and not let it decieve me into thinking the rest of the album is like that because, though it has it's moments, it is a faded effort. // 6
demonsheep, on july 06, 2007 0 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sound: I Enjoyed this CD greatly, and although it is much more complicated than Contraband, it adds to the final effect of the songs. there are many styles used in this CD, ranging from fast tracks with heavy distortion and lots of soloing, Such as She Builds Quick Machines, to slower and quieter songs, like The Last Fight, which have a quieter guitar style. this album seems to take a few runs to become really good, and I reccomend listening to it 2-3 times before rating it. Slash's guitar soloing and riffs are much more noticable in this album, and they sound great! // 9
Lyrics: I like the lyrics provided by Scott a lot, they are much more deep and intriguing than from Contraband, and they fit very well into the music provided, which adds to the overall quality of the songs. the lyrics are very well written, and Scott has a cleaner voice than before, which makes it easier to tell what he is singing. I cannot find anything wrong with the lyrics of this album, and Scott has by far outperformed Contraband with this album. // 10
Overall Impression: I believe this album is better than Contraband, as it is much more diverse and interesting. songs worth listening to are; She Builds Quick Machines, simply because it sounds Awesome, and every note on it fits perfectly; and Mary Mary, because it has a very nice vocal sound to it. I do not think any song on this album is bad, and I love the fact that every song has a solo, much like Contraband in that aspect. the only bad point is there are too few tracks! if this album was stolen/lost I would definitely buy another, maybe two just in case! // 10
haggard101, on july 11, 2007 0 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sound: Having just listened to Libertad I felt that I would like to share my insight on one of my favorite bands and there achievement. Yes, achievement I feel that critics have claimed that Libertad is nothing like Contraband. Yet when the critics reviewed 'She builds quick machines' they were stating that this album was going to be to much alike contraband. Now I for one feel that however it would sound critics would moan! So I for one have to say that as a fan and a critic per-say I feel VR have achieved something phenomenal and that is that.
01. Let It Roll - just like Sucker Train Blues was on Contraband, a great opening track! Typical Slash/Dave Riffing and licking. Defiantly my favorite track on the album.
02. She Mine - like many of the songs on the album she mine had a very STP feel about it. nice riffing again and solo is slash standards!
03. Get Out The Door - very Catchy, Has a nice tempo and structure.
04. She Builds Quick Machines - typical VR, nicely put together and a perfect winner of the first single slot.
05. The Last Fight - Libertad's 'Fall to Pieces' a very nice melody and structure giving the song a nice feel and sound.
06. American Man - very Punk rock, not the best VR could've done, but it is still got some good points one being the solo.
07. Mary Mary - very nicely put together, matt's drumming is very definitive, but in this song to me it sticks out and I love it!
08. Just Sixteen - probably a nice candidate for an upcoming single, nicely laid out and a very good song to show the album is hard-hitting all the way through.
09. Can't Get You Out Of My Head - Psycho Killer deserved this slot, I feel it was the better cover. I have a guilty admittance of skipping this track.
10. For A Brother - I am a fan of this song, it has a great hard hitting riff, typical of Velvet Revolver.
11. Spay - I only really like the chorus on this song, it's not a terrible song, but it is my least favorite.
12. Gravedancer - a nice close to the album, quite a relaxing song in my eyes. Also the nice country bonus track is a nice addition, goes to show Scott and the boys can do anything. // 9
Lyrics: Scott Weiland has always been criticized for his persona and his flamboyant actions, but his writing talents and singer abilities are second to none! He is a king of his art and one of the most original and creative front men alive or dead. He has a great way with his lyrical structure and some songs you can really delve into his thoughts and feelings including: 'Pills, Demons', 'Last Fight', 'Mary Mary' and 'Just Sixteen'. Scott is growing as a person as well as an artist and I feel he is becoming the great singer he was in early STP days yet again! I have also seen him live and I can say he is a great act and is one of few who has a better stage performance than album (even though the album performances are sublime). // 10
Overall Impression: Stone Temple Pilots! Quite a handful of the songs have that STP vibe, whether it is because of the producer Brendan O'Brien (also produced STP) or whether it was due to more input from Scott. Either way the album gained some great attributes. Anything Slash does, you can tell it's him, whether it is a riff or a lick, you instantly spot it. This album is a very great addition to his C.V. The first 6 songs blow me away. A very strong first half of the album. The whole album impresses some songs not as much, but still has greats about them. I love everything about this album except the fact they never chose Psycho Killer to be on the final album cut and that is my only disappointment. If I lost it I have it on MP3 ha ha, but if that was gone it would be top of my list to buy. // 10
Hammerzeit, on september 03, 2007 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sound: This album is modern classic rock. Simple as that. The sleazy Guns N Roses tone has almost gone and in it's place is a clean band intent on making a good rock n roll record. The sound I thought at first was a bit basic for a band of this calibre, and sounded way more stripped down than the previous release "Contraband". However after a few listens the album opens up and you can clearly hear new sounds that VR had never done before. The bassline in the solo of "Let It Roll" is different and sounds slapped or has a pedal going on for example, which duff rarely did previously. Slash's sig tone has gone but the new one blends beautifully into the album. His soloing is sublime yet nothing is quite as epic and soaring as anything off Appetite for Destruction. Dave's Rhythm guitar is tighter than ever, and riff's along a bit more. Matt's drumming has come to the front a bit more, and a lot of the albums tracks have drum led intros. However this band is now a unit, not just Guns and Roses, Weiland and some punk guitarist. The album shows this and sounds much more co ordinated and dare I say it, mature. // 9
Lyrics: Lyrics have never really been Weilands strongpoint. He does however bring his personal experiences to the lyrics. "Mary Mary" for example goes over his marriage problems with his wife Mary. For a Brothers title sums the song up, as it is written about his brothers struggle with addiction, as is "Pills, Demons Etc". Other times you find it hard to understand what the heck he's talking about such as in songs such as "She Builds Quick Machines". His lyrics can get repetative such as in "American Man" (freedom mentioned about 5 times and "yes I am the american man" repeated constantly) and "Let it roll". However no matter how ropey his lyrics are, no one can deny Weiland sounds immaculate on this album and shows he has a great voice which has great range. Songs he excels on are "Let it roll" and "The Last Fight". However for most VR fans, it is about the music rather than the lyrics. // 6
Overall Impression: The album is definatly more classic rock than contraband, and the dirty cigarette smoking, Jack Daniels drinking hard rock is almost gone. I'd say it is more like Stone Temple Pilots than Guns N Roses, but to me the ballads reflect Pink floyd just a touch, and the whole album has more of a groove to it.
01. Let It Roll - excellent opener. Cool Riff leads you in straight from the start and the pace doesn't drop through a memorable slash solo and out of the other side again.
02. She Mine - catchy chorus, would make a good single but I think is a bit ordinary and the song would happily stand on it's own. I'm not a fan of this track.
03. Get Out The Door - again, catchy chorus. A bit slower than your average VR song and it typifies the new sound. Not one of my favourites but it won't dissappoint.
04. She Builds Quick Machines - lead single, I think it's excellent. It has a big riff, Memorable solo. Would fit on contraband and is an excellent bridge for the gap.
05. The Last Fight - lyrically the best song on the album, but I think even for a ballad it is a bit tame. It just chugs uninnovativly. Not a big fan of this track and it's not a patch on Fall to pieces. However, great lyrics.
06. Pills, Demons Etc - this is where VR enter new territory. The riff is a Wah driven funk fest, underpinned by a grooving bassline. The solo fits well and has a catchy chorus.
07. American Man - despite the simple lyrics I think this song is great. Duff's walking bassline is brilliant and works well with Matts drums. The solo in this song fits so well it's unreal.
08. Mary Mary - this for me sounds too similar to American man and pills demons. However the riff is big and the solo volatile. Not a bad song, just too similar.
09. Just Sixteen - the lyrics are dirty and the song has a more sleazy tone. Singable Chorus and great solo. Fits Well
10. Can't Get It Out Of My Head - I think is weaker than the last fight. Good cover but doesn't do anything for me.
11. For A Brother - this is filler, but like the others has a catchy singable chorus. Nothing more to say.
12. Spay - this could fit on contraband easily. I have a feeling that this could be the third single, as it could be played on the radio easily. Again not the best track on the album but good.
13. Gravedancer - best of the 3 Ballads, Slash solo's well and Weilands vocals are great. Would be a great end to the album but.
14. Don't Drop That Dime - a country track, which is done very well and is very catchy. I think slash solo's on a banjo and it's sounds brilliant. it's very funny, and shows diversity.
If I lost it, which I have, I wouldn't buy it again, but then it's on my PC and ipod so who needs to. If I only had a CD player I would. Overall this is step in the right direction for VR, and musically they are in top form. Here's to the next one. // 8
reesy, on january 23, 2008 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sound: The overall album sound is a lot more cleaner and polished than contraband. The effect on some songs is great such as let it roll, a real punk/blues rock song reminiscent of g n r. Some other stand out moments include she builds quick machines, very much a song that could have been included on contraband and an obvious first single, for a brother, Weiland on top form here, and Spay a great alternative track. Where at times this album falls flat is on songs like get out the door, last fight and pill, demons & etc. Whereas on Contraband there were many layers of guitar here for the most part there is only three, add to the fact the mix is a lot cleaner with the majority of the bass end left to Duff and Dave kept firmly in the mid some of the songs do loose their impact. This isn't a bad thing and the majority of the songs do grow on you as you begin to listen to it more and forget any comparisons with contraband. The only song in my opinion that is completely out of place is the cover of ELO can't get you out of my head which seems fairly pointless. // 8
Lyrics: Weiland seems to have toned done since coming off drugs in my opinion. His previous work have been dominated by his addictions and have produced some really fantastic results. It's a good thing as a person he is clean but his lyrics have suffered. The majority of this album is based on female attention and the blatantly obvious Mary, Mary is completely about his wife. He has obviously been going through some bad times with her and chose this as a catharsis which at times works great, songs like just 16 and let it roll work well as the lyrics are simple and provide a good backing to the rock 'n' roll influences. His brother did recently pass away and was probably a sore spot for him but his lyrics in for a brother really hit home, his other personal experience of prison, shown in the last fight, really don't hit home but I feel that is mainly because of the rhythm of the dong rather than the lyrical content. American man again the verses are very well written but the chorus is really boring. Overall there are some really stand out moments, the bridge in she's mine springs to mind, but it's not his best work but enough there to keep you thinking. // 7
Overall Impression: The problem this album has, and any sophomore album, is generally the debut album sets the bar. Contraband was a great album, hard rocking deep with some really beautiful melodic moments. Libertad at times you feel is up there songs like let it roll, she builds quick machines, just 16, spay and for a brother, deliver. The majority of the songs even have sections where you think to yourself, wow these guys really rock, for instant the previously mentioned bridge in she's mine and the funky main riff in pill, demons & etc. For me where they have gone wrong are the ballads, in contraband they had three great ballads in fall to pieces, you got no right and loving the alien. On libertad, gravedancer probably lives up to your expectations but the last fight and can't get you out of my head are, dare I say it, awful. Particularly the mix on can't get you out of my head where the drums stand out and sound massively out of place. But having said that there is enough material here to make it an enjoyable album and after 6 months of listening it has really grown on me. // 8
pawnshopguitars, on august 18, 2008 0 of 3 people found this review helpful
Sound: You can tell the guys have grown from the first record; the songs sound much tighter, and seem a lot more well written. I think this is why the album hasn't been as much of a hit for them as they had hoped; I think that it takes a while to get into the album and appreciate it for what it is. It is totally different to Contraband, in that it covers a greater variety of styles, and the song writing is of a higher level on // 1