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Taproot: The Episodes

Just when you thought nu-metal was all but dead and buried, out comes another Taproot release to remind us that what was all the rage in the late 90's still has some life left in the tank. Though they've often somewhat sailed on the seas of Korn, Taproot do have a signature style, mixing nu-metal angst with lush pop harmonies and swirling soundscapes, most of which are fully on display here on their sixth album.

Opening tracks "Good Morning" and "No Surrender" are both catchy rockers, with fat bass lines working alongside the beefy riffs, and bleeping synths flutter under the dreamy effects laden vocals. "Lost Boy" mixes some harsh vocal tones with almost Beatles styled clean passages, while tunes like "The Everlasting", "Around the Bend" and "Memorial Park" almost veer off into Anathema territory thanks to the lushness of the arrangements and melodic vocals. It's not until the latter part of "Around the Bend" that we get the albums first real 'heavy' moments, complete with some crushing riffs and extreme vocals. "A Kiss From the Sky" is a fun nu-metal/industrial/pop rocker, and the soaring "Strange & Fascinating" hints at both pop and prog rock. Unfortunately "A Golden Grey" falls into the generic alternative/nu-metal category, and is easily the weakest track here, but they bounce back on closer "We Don't Belong Here", a nightmarish track featuring many textures and moods brought on by dense arrangements and layers of vocal styles.

By no means is The Episodes a masterpiece, but considering it's 2012 and nu-metal has mostly been forgotten by many a metalhead, this is still a very solid release from a band that is still proving to be relevant despite the changing times. Worth a listen for sure.

Track Listing
1. Good Morning
2. No Surrender
3. Lost Boy
4. Memorial Park
5. The Everlasting
6. Around The Bend
7. A Kiss From The Sky
8. Strange & Fascinating
9. A Golden Grey
10. We Don't Belong Here

Added: April 15th 2012
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band MySpace Page
Hits: 2191
Language: english

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