So, COC has decided to get back together again and release another record. Reuniting always doesn't mean that you are going to have a strong record. I was very apprehensive, wary and excited at the same time for these reasons. 1. "America's Volume Dealer" wasn't a good record for the fact that Pepper's voice sounded a lot like James Hetfield and that's not a good thing. I guess being on the road with METALLICA rubbed off on them a lot and not in a good way either. 2. I was happy because they were always a good band and being out of the public's eye for so long, you would think that they would take their time in crafting an album that would kick your ass like days of yore.
Well, here it is and I am not all that stoked about it. "Stone Breaker" kicks things off and it does rock because all of the COC qualities are in there. The drums pound away and the guitars are loud and obnoxious. It rocks for sure, but there are plenty of Stoner riffs in there that slow things down and it wasn't doing it for me. This band is all about energy. It's not that bad, but it doesn't quite kick ass as much as "Paranoid Opioid." From beginning to end, this track doesn't let up with the crunching guitars and furious vocal patterns. For all of you SABBATH-philes out there who like it slow and heavy, you can sink your teeth into "It Is That Way." "Dirty Hands" offers a touch of Southern Rock to the mix like in the old days and the result is electric. "Rise River Rise" is a refreshing change of pace as this is a semi-acoustic number that adds some percussion and an electric guitar that's used from time to time. I have to say that this is a track that I like a lot because it's different, yet there is something about this song that I am drawn too. It's catchy in an unusual way and it keeps my attention throughout.
I have to admit that when I first popped the CD in, I wasn't all that thrilled with it. Perhaps because I wasn't in the right mood. But now as I have had a day or two without it and I listened to it again, it's not that bad at all. It's typical COC with all the trimmings and the thing rocks out. Good effort from the boys. (Online June 3, 2005)