To kick off the new millennium, Papa Roach were signed to a major label for this, their second album. Sure, the name of the album and cover is gross, yet this is considered widely to be their best album to date. Let’s see if it has aged well, and holds that title firmly.
Infest begins the album with a slow intro that actually harks back to psychedelia. Before long, some really Heavy Metal style guitars enter. Some Rage Against The Machine style singing enters. Considered a mix of Rap and Metal musically, Papa Roach do a great job here. The lyrics are moaning against authoritarian people and things. “What is wrong with the world today? Government, media or your family?” is repeated here. This is a great start to this album, and sounds musically top. Very catchy and memorable, this is an awesome song.
Last Resort leads off with a plea, but it is not necessarily depressing. In fact, it is a good sounding piece musically, even if the lyrics are dark. The guitars in particular sound mega here, and are perfectly mixed in with the rest of the band. In the middle, there is some whispering Nine Inch Nails style. Although a piece about troubled emotions, this is a great song. The music on offer here is fantastic to listen to.
Next is Broken Home with some delayed guitars in the intro, before singing enters which is very melodic. It is a wonderful piece of cross genre music, although the lyrics are on a tad depressing side. Still, the songs here are amazing. Although this was released way back in 2000, it sounds as though it could have been recorded today and just as easily accepted by music fans out there. Top marks to these guys, it is an energetic and intense piece of music, particularly towards the end. The screaming in the outro is amazing.
Following is Dead Cell which begins with Metal guitars that sound very much like Grunge. It is an enormous sound that is very addictive listening. The music and lyrics complement each other here, being a wonderful combination of rhythm, melody, Rap, Metal and attitude. The screaming throughout is amazing, and the whole thing sounds essential listening and awesome. Another top listen which must be heard.
Between Angels And Insects comes next with a heavily distorted guitar intro, before launching straight into a loud and energetic piece that is a bit dark musically and lyrically. It is designed to be a melancholy track, but still sounds really good. Not a bad track is on this album so far, and this is a strong album, no matter what mood Papa Roach cover. This is another great song which is good for a bad day. Excellent music. The outro is massively awesome.
Blood Brothers was on the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2 soundtrack, and for very good reasoning. It is loud, melodic and has some amazing musicianship about it. This is a top track, and the chorus in particular great. Singing about the uses and abuses of power, this is top music to hear. Very catchy, heavy and listenable, this is a great song. The dark psyche of humanity is covered in this track, and it is one great song. A must listen.
Next is Revenge which begins with some extremely heavy instrumentation and some wah-wah guitar as well. It is an extremely loud and Metal style piece that is more guitar work than anything else. There are some interesting sound effects throughout. It is a song directly about relationship issues. The vocals could have been mixed somewhat higher in the mix, and it suffers somewhat as a result due to this. There is a Hip Hop drum loop in the middle with some discordant screaming guitars. Still, even if this is much more guitar oriented than anything else, it is another awesome track. Nice job Papa Roach. A great job, the outro is cool too.
Following is Snakes which begins with some Punk like riffing, before going into a clever and catchy groove. Another solid and excellent slice of a great mixture of primarily Rap and Metal, with some other influences put into the mix. There is a DJ mix breakdown in between the verses here as well, which is surprisingly good. A great Heavy Metal piece with passion and energy about it, this is top music. It sounds manic and hectic towards the end. This is a band who knew how to make great tunes. Excellent song.
Never Enough comes next, with heavy guitars in the intro. This is great stuff right here, and although this is super heavy musically, this is an uplifting and wonderful listening experience. The whole thing is very much in sync on an instrumental level, with a tight groove. Papa Roach are a group who know how to break down musical barriers, another great track and compelling listening from start to finish. The screaming and drum work in particular here are intense, super effort.
Binge comes next, with its semi call-and-response musicality, whilst singing about alcoholism is here. It is about a guy who loses sight of what life is about through alcohol consumption. All the same, it is a good song once again, although it is somewhat dreary sounding, especially lyrically. Still, this is a good song, with some Nine Inch Nails feel to it. A strong and emotional listen, it is a reminder of what drugs and alcohol can do to people. Good song.
After that is Thrown Away/Tight Rope which is a nine minute long medley of two songs together. It begins with some superb riffing and is about intense emotions. This is amazing and a great mesh of Rap and Metal and Papa Roach have succeeded very well on this record to bring their music to the masses. There are some great Grunge whispering/screaming changes here, showcasing an imaginative and brilliant effort here. The music here is very consistent from start to finish, and the guitar riffs here in particular are memorable and wonderful. This is a well constructed piece that merges into the next piece, after stopping abruptly. There are some reversed sounds and electronic instrumentation, leading into the second half of this medley. A pseudo-Reggae piece then begins, which is totally different and quirky to boot. Lyrically it sounds rather messed up, although it is well written. Talking about walking a tight rope metaphorically, this is a great listen. If life is considered a tight rope walk, Papa Roach are the soundtrack for it. A strange medley of music here, this is very good and solidly consistent. A fresh and inspired piece of excellent created music, great medley here.
The extra track Legacy comes next which is a more straightforward track that sounds great. Fortunately, we can hear it on re-releases of this album, and it is a welcome addition to the album. A strong, loud, powerful and passionate listen, this is superb. It just goes to show how good (at this point) Papa Roach were. Top notch music, and never a dull moment here. Some great singing towards the end is here, cementing a great reputation for the band.
Dead Cell – Live finishes the album with a great intro where the singer interacts with the crowd nicely, before going into a good live version of the song on this album. Great listening, and passionate delivery is here as well, as the album draws to a close. Good work. Just as good live as in the studio, Papa Roach do fantastically here.
This is one of the best albums from a semi-Nu Metal basis, but it is so much more than that. It is a highly artistic, articulate, intelligent and well thought out collection of songs. Papa Roach made a great album here, and it is definitely worth hearing, even over 20 years after its release. If you dig Rap or Metal, you should definitely listen to this top record.