Perhaps the best thing about SoSoHuman's release, Twentiy-Six, is that they produce such a powerful, full sound without overdoing the production or the melodramatics. It's strictly straight-forward hard rock — the kind that is good on disk and even better live.
Stylistically, the sound is more System of a Down than Metallica. At their best, though, they have arguably better vocals than the former and far more energy than Metallica's recent releases. The opener, "Weakened and Scattered" makes a promise that not all of the rest can quite live up to, unfortunately.
Hitting "Homeless" four songs into the CD is like hitting a speedbump in the flow of the music. It saps energy without the kind of emotional payoff that a slower song should carry. Instead of providing contrast it begs to be skipped. Luckily, that's offset by songs like "Threat of Rain" with it's speed changes and prog rock bent.
Best of the bunch for anyone wishing that the Seattle sound of the 90's still ruled radio is "Anthem". Musically a very obvious nod to Nirvana, it's a pounding dose of near grunge assault with a scream-along chorus that must have been written specifically for concerts. Tasty.
The closer, "PIrate Song" leaves the thing on a down note with over nine minutes of a boringly repetitive tune and the sound of a band that ran out of ideas but not disk space. A pity because it overshadows some of the better songs — exactly the wrong impression to leave listeners with at the end of their CD.
It's a decent album that proves that SoSoHuman might well have something great still waiting to get out. For hard rock fans, it's another band to watch and a CD to listen to when in the mood for a taste of something different.
Available through iTunes.