Often shadowed by more extreme musical genres and perhaps marked by those masterpieces that were published between the two centuries, today Alternative Metal is definitely a type of music that struggles to reach the forefront and also mainstream recognition. Apparently it seems that the creative vein that brought this genre to success about twenty years ago is now exhausted, and the few brave music bands who still venture along the streets of this style of metal can only pick up the few crumbs left behind by the ancient masters. Occasionally, however, some album escapes this inexorable law and manages to be noticed for its own qualities. And it’s always nice to dive into the sounds of this kind of music. It’s like a brief and intense journey into the past, when we were about twenty years younger and we had to wait to see our favorite groups on MTV, without Youtube and Spotify.
Today there are not so many alternative metal albums that deserve our attention. I’ve picked up here the best LPs I’ve heard this year. These are two groups that – even through different stories – have come to the same point of arrival. And these are definitely two beautiful records to bring with us in the forthcoming years.
Poison the Parish by Seether
It may seem a curious thing at first, but this year the best alternative metal album comes from South Africa and was produced by a band of veteran rockers who – until a few years ago – very few would have associated the metal world. Seether, a post-grunge band from Pretoria, has been in fact the protagonist of one of the most interesting music transformations of the year. Poison the Parish, the seventh full-lenght work by the trio, arrived three years after their previous release and signed a new heavier direction for the band. And based on what we hear on the album, the change is for the better.
The musical style of Seether, today, is clearly inspired by the masters of alternative metal (Tool and Alice in Chains, just to mention the most evident sourcse of inspiration), but the album never trascends into a mere imitation of the models.
This album is definitely one of the best surprises of the year. These guys have developed an exceptional mix of “metal” atmospheres and mainstream “rock” music motifs: the result, in this case, is more than the sum of the two parts.
unReal by My Ticket Home
Listening to the latest album by My Ticket Home, an American quartet from Ohio, we immediately realize that these guys were raised with huge doses of 90′ nu-metal and grunge. Their music, in fact, is virtually a collage of the most beautiful alternative things that has been made over the last twentyfive years and whan I play their new album, unReal, I often find myself reliving the emotions I had with the first beautiful albums by Deftones and A Perfect Circle.
Once I made clear that the music of this band does not excel for originality, it must be said however that unReal is definitely an excellent LP of good and powerful alternative metal, energetic and engaging as few albums have been able to be in the recent months.
Finding and crafting your own musical style while you dive into the world of your idols is not easy. These guys are trying to achieve this ambitious goal and as long as their songs will keep this level of quality we can definitely forgive some excessive reference they to the masters of the past and simply enjoy their music.