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Cold: Superfiction

Being from the other side of The Pond from Atlanta's Cold, I have to admit that this is one post-grunge act that have until now, completely passed me by. In fact the band's 2003 Year Of The Spider album actually peaked at #3 in the Billboard Charts, although that success did prove to be the catalyst for Cold to split. Although they did put out A Different Kind Of Pain in 2005, albeit with an altered line-up, before finally burning out a year later. Then in 2008 Cold suddenly reappeared, and now numerous line-up shuffles later we have album number five Superfiction. Still in place are ever presents Scooter Ward (vocals), Jeremy Marshall (bass) and Sam McCandless (drums), who have been joined by guitarists Zach Glibert (who also appeared with the band between 2005 and 2006) and Drew Molleur, although the latter doesn't appear in the credits for this album.

So with the rather convoluted back story rather quickly covered, the only thing that really matters is whether Superfiction is actually any good. On the whole the answer to that question is a reasonably resounding "Yes", although that's not to say that all twelve songs on the album are as convincing as things initially appear. Opening with a staccato riff which (especially through headphones) is pleasantly unsettling as it swoops from channel to channel, "Wicked World" kicks things off in fine style, with a monstrous wallop of guitars smacking you square between the eyes, before Scooter's classy vocals take centre stage. In between, the drums hammer their point home and little guitar motifs fire out in all directions. "What Happens Now" follows things up in a harder Jimmy Eat World kind of way, with a more restrained verse moving over for another full on Nickelback meets Green Day chorus. Hiking up the already impressive standard set "American Dream" is the sort of song that really could turn Cold into a chart act with hooks galore and an imperious vocal performance once again from Scooter.

Things continue in similar and impressive form through "The Break", "Welcome2my world" and the slower more storytelling styled "Emily". Then "The Crossroads" proves to an all too aptly titled song, with a phased riff and tricky rhythm being the last of the truly stellar tracks on Superfiction. In truth if Cold had ended things there, they could have had something really special on their hands. Instead the final five tracks take a disappointing nose dive, feeling more like an obligation, regurgitating sounds and themes already visited with far less gusto. It really is a shame as Superfiction really was shaping up extremely well up until this point, but the lacklustre "Delivering The Saint" sets the tone for the final four songs which all sound far too similar to make any lasting mark.

So it is an almost but not quite for this comeback from Cold and had it not been for them taking their eye off the ball as the album came to a close this really could have been a contender for the album of the year title. As it is there are still enough quality songs on board to make this an album well worthy of your attention and for those who, like me, still want to have physical product over downloads, the booklet is presented excellently with some classy comic book illustrations.

Track Listing
1. Wicked World
2. What Happens Now
3. American Dream
4. The Break
5. Welcome2myworld
6. Emily
7. The Crossroads
8. Delivering The Saint
9. So Long June
10. The Park
11. Flight Of The Superstar
12. The Ballad Of The Nameless

Added: October 7th 2011
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Cold Army
Hits: 2283
Language: english

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