There are real moments of bone-crunching brilliance.
Label: Reprise Records
Released: 21st August 2015
They’ve made fans wait for years already with their hiatus, and Disturbed are happy to make them wait that little bit longer with opener ‘The Eye of the Storm’, a slick and drawn out instrumental. ‘Immortalized”s title track then has frontman David Draiman’s vocals piercing through the staccato riffs, never quite matching up in power, but with all the cornerstones of Disturbed – and that’s both the album’s brilliance and trouble.
‘The Vengeful One’ is almost threatening in its presence, the chorus a doomsday soundtrack, pushing where the previous song sat comfortably in their past. ‘The Light’ shifts their sound into the aesthetic of positivity, offsetting in its difference but intriguing nonetheless. ‘Save The Last Goodbye’ goes for the guts in terms of lyricism and pulling emotion, but feels overproduced in the process, where ‘Fire It Up’ is just a bit of a roller coaster. They’re clearly pushing themselves – sometimes it works, other times it just mills around.
This does mark a shift for Disturbed, but it’s only as far as they can go without sacrificing sounding like, you know, Disturbed. There are real moments of bone-crunching brilliance, others where you notice quite how far they’ve tried to move their style forward, but there are songs here and there can just smack of overproduction or misfire.
Few would expect a Simon and Garfunkel cover in its midst, but this is probably their greatest curveball yet: that ‘The Sound of Silence’ sits with orchestral delicacy, Draiman’s vocals being stripped bare and showing their potential without famed shrieks. It’s in this spirit you’ve got to admire ‘Immortalized’ – some moments can make little sense, but others catch you off guard in the most ridiculously brilliant way. Heather McDaid