Some bands are constantly evolving. Some bands sell-out. Some bands are formulaic. Some bands are formulaic but are consistently tweaking their formulas in the struggle for perfection. I wrote the last statement with Disturbed specifically in mind.
A lot of metal enthusiasts out there have pegged Disturbed as nu-metal, unfairly I might add, because of solid radio play and a more-than-cult following. Some have even labeled the band "alternative metal." Gag me please. Disturbed front-man David Draiman even called his own band's music "hard rock." Mr. Draiman, forgive me for calling out your feelings on your own band, but you must be shitting me.
Just because some metalheads can't come to terms with the existence of less chaotic / more melodic heavy metal doesn't mean it doesn't exist. If you were to put Disturbed's brand new album Indestructible in front of Jack Black, he'd tell you what genre it was just by looking at the cover.
Alright, Jack Black probably isn't the final word on all things metal, and neither am I. But there is a decidedly metal feel to each of Disturbed's four full-lengths. Formulaic? Yes. Organized? Yes. Masterful? Of course. The band has also grown a fondness for shredding guitar solos, and we all know that shredding guitar solos make or break a band's heavy metal status.
Finally, to the point. Indestructible, Disturb's fourth release, wins back much of the edge that the band might have lost between the freshman full-length The Sickness (2000) and now. Although Believe's (2002) chugging, dark, melodic anthems converted me into a believer, the album felt like the band had something to prove. Ten Thousand Fists (2005) began the return to the metal, but I don't feel like the dark edginess that the band demonstrated in The Sickness had been captured again until now.
Between Draiman's dark, gruff vocals, crunchy dropped-tuning guitars, and the pounding double-bass, the recipe for a spectacular metal album is complete. This is more of the same, only refined and closer to perfection. I do believe these boys are startin' to get the hang of it.
WARNING: The video posted above (for the new single "Inside the Fire") is not for the weak of heart. Viewer discretion is advised.
"You come on like a bloodstained hurricane / Leave me alone, let me be this time."
- David Draiman, "Inside the Fire"