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The Art of Rebellion

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(29 Reviews)

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  • In 1991, when the world was held in the grip of Whitney Houston, Michael Bolton musical haze, Tori Amos, Nirvana, and the Seattle Grunge scene broke on the charts and unseated the mellow gods. In the wake of that wave, while all record companies were looking to sign the “Next Nirvana,” Suicidal Tendencies, long darlings of the skater set, masters of rage and anger, quietly released this most mature and stunning album. Had music’s attention not been focused elsewhere, it would hold a much higher place in the public eye, I’m sure. Focusing heavily upon a twin theme of depression and paranoia, the work moves with relentless grace through a series of incredibly orchestrated, well thought songs. It starts out angry and fast, with “Can’t Stop” and “Accept My Sacrifice.” Then in a decidedly un-Tendencies way, moves into the slower, sitting on the edge of sanity styled, “I Wasn’t Meant to Feel This/Asleep at the Wheel,” and gleefully topples over the edge into “Got to Kill Captain Stupid,” and “Hate You Better.” There simply isn’t a bad track on this one. The Tendencies show a lot of musical maturity as well, at this time, they were working on a number of side projects (as the band began to splinter,) like their Ska/Chilli Pepper inspired alter ego, “The Infectious Grooves.” They bring the knowledge gleaned from these musical diversions to bear on this album. Gone are the blindingly fast, quantity over quality speed chords of the early albums, and Muir’s voice has graduated from the near incoherent shouting of “institutionalized,” to a smooth honey glaze that slides through the songs like an undertow, allowing the intellegent lyrics and musical turns to do the ripping. At times almost unintrusive, but capable of crushing intensity, a worthy addition to any collection that include both Metalica and Tool.

    Posted on February 8, 2010