Skindred offer up a host of new songs to do the Newport Helicopter to, baby.
Skindred have always seemed to cop a lot of shit from musical elitists. It’s either for combining elements of metal with reggae/dub influences; for seeming like a more recent and commercial version of Sepultura, or for the groovy, nu-metal elements in their songs. No matter how you look at it, a lot of shade gets thrown their way, and yet they play to some of the biggest crowds and on the biggest stages you’ll find. This, that negativity is just one side of the coin; the other side being positivity and fandom. That’s true about many bands of course, but for some, Skindred included, it seems even more applicable.
For their new album, ‘Volume’, they’ve just turned everything up to 11 (“Ha Ha Ha, funny volume joke about an album called Volume is funny”) and sometimes that results in a sticky mess, but that isn’t the case for this record. This is an album that will give ammunition for the haters, and will satiate the hunger all of their fans to no end. Everything about this 14 track record, from the lyrics, to the riffs and the choruses; it’s all got the slick, energetic Skindred sound and vibe to it. Sure some songs aren’t quite the go-go of tracks like ‘Shut Ya Mouth’, ‘Under Attack’, and ‘No Justice‘, as the band aim to break it up with the more commercial edge of their sound (See ‘Three Words‘ as a good reference for that), but on the other hand, most songs are just the fast, go-go anthems of older tracks like 'Warning', and 'Kill The Power', which doesn't so much push the envelope as it does lick it, and send it off.
But while this album is a lot of fun, and we do mean A LOT of fun, it's a very safe record at that. It's nothing all that new for their sound, despite it being a slightly more aggressive and guitar driven record. Interestingly enough this is one of those rare times when a band describes their album as being more energetic and aggressive and it actually being true. On ya boys.
At the end of the day, ‘Volume’ is really just another batch of Skindred; more pumped up anthems that’ll make many a crowd go coo-coo. However, this is not some grand game changing album, and that’s fine, it didn’t have to be to be good, but it’s definitely not all that original or that much of a progression for Benji Webbe and co.
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3. Hit The Ground
4. Shut Ya Mouth
6. The Healing
7. Sound The Siren
8. Saying It Now
10. Straight Jacket
12. No Justice
13. Stand Up
14. Three Words