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Stone Sour - 'Audio Secrecy' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/original/4a/a7/b3/782_StoneSourAUDIOSECRECY_1288989440.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     November 05, 2010    
 
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Secrecy's irresistibly catchy sound should snag plenty of attention from lovers of easy, uncomplicated listening.

Corey Taylor and co. whip up another winning formula for big-selling, corporate success. Boasting a fresh array of rock and pop-infused influences, ‘Audio Secrecy’ has been widely marketed as a no-holds-barred exercise in expression. But given Stone Sour’s Grammy-nominated status, it would be naïve to assume that this release was untouched by the commercial awareness that oozes from every inch of ‘…Secrecy’. 

Indeed, the whole affair is crammed with soft rock trappings that see the band moving in distinctly radio-friendly circles. And despite Taylor’s prestigious association with Slipknot, his latest output wastes a vast amount of studio space on relentlessly chipper pop and sickly melodies that smack of boy band-style fodder. With its squeaky-clean lyrics and stadium rock-inspired sound, ‘Miracles’ delivers a stomach-churning overdose of saccharine balladry. Although riddled with generic material, ‘Audio Secrecy’ is nevertheless peppered with a few standouts that hark back to the once-angry vibe of the band’s self-titled debut. Opening on a chaotic tangle of screams and snares, ‘The Bitter End’ is a stripped-back outing that rages toward a satisfyingly aggressive climax. But this welcome dose of adrenalin remains carefully controlled within Stone Sour’s increasingly mild sonic boundaries. Switching effortlessly from deafening howls to velvet-smooth verses, Taylor showcases a typically agile range featuring a rare fusion of raw pain and bitter rage. Aided only by an acoustic guitar, the chameleonic frontman evokes a moving blend of sweetness and anger across the sorrowful melody lines of ‘Imperfect’, reminding listeners precisely why the singer remains such an influential fixture of today’s global rock scene.

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Although a touch of Stone Sour’s early aggression remains intact, the band have mellowed beyond recognition in recent years. The end result will leave metal fans utterly nonplussed, but ‘…Secrecy’s’ irresistibly catchy sound should snag plenty of attention from lovers of easy, uncomplicated listening.

Faye Coulman

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