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Chevelle - Hats Off To The Bull (5/10) - USA - 2011

Genre: Alternative Metal
Label: Epic Records
Playing time: 43:00
Band homepage: -

Tracklist:

  1. Face To The Floor
  2. Same Old Trip
  3. Ruse
  4. The Meddler
  5. Pińata
  6. Envy
  7. Hats Off To The Bull
  8. Arise
  9. Revenge
  10. Prima Donna
  11. Clones
Chevelle - Hats Off To The Bull

CHEVELLE have been doing their thing for more than fifteen years now. Although they’ve been recommended to me many times as an important part of the Alternative Metal scene, I’ve never really taken the time to listen to them. After checking out their latest album, I’m sorry to say that I don’t understand their popularity.

 

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not horrible music at all – some chords reminded me of TOOL, a band I highly respect. And while singer-guitarist Pete Loeffer’s voice can get some time getting used to, it became a lot more pleasant to my ear as the album went on. I missed solos, which often sound like they’re about to start, but they never do. On many songs, it felt to me like a car stalling – a moment where CHEVELLE could’ve been awesome, but decided not to.

 

But this wouldn’t be a dealbreaker. After all, this is an Alternative Metal album, lack of solos is not something unheard of in this genre. Here is the main problem I have: After no less than six listens, two of which I took the time to take notes, I am unable to remember anything from any song on this album. I can remember liking the opening riff of “Face To The Floor”, but if you were to ask me to hum its melody, I wouldn’t be able. I also remember liking the title track’s chorus, but I truly, honest to God, can’t remember how it goes.

 

So there you have it, folks. It’s not a horrible album, far from it, but it ain’t particularly good, either. Why? I’m not sure of that. Maybe it takes more than six listens to appreciate this CD, but I doubt it. My guess would be that this is not CHEVELLE’s best album; I can sense that musicianship and talent are somewhere within the band – it just ain’t on this particular CD. This is very listenable music that you'll give a spin a few times then never think about again.

(Online December 27, 2011)

Jean-Filipe Bergeron



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