When I first saw the cover art for Indestructible, I thought it looked suspiciously like the art for the previous album (or like the cover to a single from that album). When I finally heard the Indestructible, I figured out why; it’s pretty much the same album as Ten Thousand Fists. The unfortunate thing is that I actually prefer this album to its immediate predecessor,–I think most of the songs are technically better–but the feeling of sameness that accompanies the tunes detracts from them. If Indestructible had been released first, I would have a much higher opinion of it.
Similarly, if Indestructible and Ten Thousand Fists had both been released before Believe, I would hold them in even higher regard. I feel Believe is by far their best album as it shows them much more willing to experiment a bit with their sound. They mixed the heavy with the melodic to greater effect on songs like “Prayer,” “Believe” and “Remember,” and they didn’t even mind throwing in some odd meter here and there. (Catnip for prog nerds like myself.) Given that they’ve since released two albums that sound exactly the same as each other, I fear they’ve settled on what they feel to be their definitive sound and that we won’t be hearing much innovation from them in the future.
That said, there are definitely some good tracks on here. The first two especially stand out. “Inside the Fire” may be one of their poppiest tracks yet–I keep getting the image of dancing girls performing some nifty synchronized choreography during the chorus–but it lends to its incredible catchiness. I really like the new recording of “Perfect Insanity,” which I didn’t really care for much in its demo incarnation. Honestly, if you took the standout tracks from this, the standouts from Ten Thousand Fists and combined them with some of the B-sides from the Ten Thousand Fists recording sessions, you’d have an incredibly solid album on the level of The Sickness.