Stone Sour – ‘Hydrograd’ (Roadrunner Records) Print E-mail
CD Reviews
Written by Marc Leach   
Monday, 03 July 2017 04:30

Stone Sour - HydrogradYou know, if I had a penny for every time I seen the name ‘Corey Taylor’ appear on my Facebook timeline then I would be one rich mother… (shut yo mouth!) But what do you expect when you are one of the busiest, most popular and respected vocalists in the music industry? When he is not busy raising hell while wearing a mask in Slipknot, he is raising hell with his other band, Stone Sour who have just released their album; ‘Hydrograd.’

 

It’s not too often an album opens with a voice saying ‘hello, you bastards’ but that is what each listener will be greeted to during the instrumental introduction; ‘YSIF.’ This Black Sabbath influenced piece also introduces the listener to the band’s newest members Christian Martucci on lead guitar and Johnny Chow on bass. ‘Taipei Person/Allah Tea’ is where Corey’s both signature laugh and gritty vocals comes out to play for probably the strongest track on the album that features a wide variety of different musical styles throughout. There one thing I can say about this record thus far, the guitar work sounds so much sharper than the band’s previous albums which could be all thanks to Martucci who has filled in Jim Root’s (of Slipknot fame) massive boots. This is predominantly evident during the thunderous ‘Knievel Has Landed’ and ‘Hydrograd.’

 

Stone Sour have always been able to write a fantastic mainstream song (despite comments coming from a certain well-known singer) so ‘Song #3’ (which is actually the fifth track) is this record’s hit single and mainstream sounding piece which is almost on par with the likes of ‘Through The Glass.’ With his time in Slipknot, Corey has always been regarded one of the best shouters in metal history but it is this song in particular where he shows that he a fantastic singer also. Things get a little more comical for ‘Rose Red Violent Blue (This Song Is Dumb & So Am I)' which has a mixture of jazz and punk together; I know it sounds weird but Stone Sour do it pretty well here. With how high octane this record it’s only right for things to slow down a little more and this can be said for the beautiful acoustic ‘St. Marie’ where Corey once again shows off his stunning singing voice; still hard to believe this is the singer of Slipknot!

 

 

You would generally think that an album would consist of 10 - 12 songs, right? Not for these guys as they push out to 15 tracks! The party just never stops for Stone Sour especially for the fast paced ‘Friday Knights’ and ‘Somebody Stole My Eyes;’ both of which have that punk rock style. ‘When The Fever Broke’ ends the album with a more prog rock sound where a wider use of effects from the musicians is used to create a very airy track all while Corey’s voice continues to shine throughout. I have to say it was pretty brave to send this album on a slow number; unless of course you pick up the Japanese release which has two additional songs, including a cover of ‘Unchained’ by Van Halen.

 

So, have Stone Sour continued to prove they are the kings of modern rock with this sixth release? Yes, they have indeed. Minus the excessive track listing (anything past track ten is rather boring) this is fantastic body of work. While Corey’s voice is the most stand out feature throughout, it’s Martucci who truly steals the show with his outstanding lead guitar work; which corresponds much better with rhythm guitarist Josh Rand. A tight collection of songs and a pin sharp production also helped make this album sound as great as it does.

 

‘Hydrograd’ was released on Friday (30 June).

 

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