Stone Sour - Travis Shinn Taipei Person

STONE SOUR – HYDROGRAD

Stone Sour – Hydrograd Album Review

“Hallo, you bastards.” -YSIF

On June 30th the metal-heads from Des Moines, Iowa released their 6th studio album via Roadrunner Records.

Image result for stone sour hydrograd cover

Many hardcore Stone Sour fans know that Hydrograd is an interestingly unique offering from the band who consistently produces a more gritty, hard-thrashing metal sound. The new album sounds like Slipknot front-man Corey Taylor and the Sour boys had a lot of fun experimenting within an array of different genres ranging from their usual metal and hard rock staples into more alternative and melodic sounding rock going as far as featuring a damn country ballad! (“St. Marie”)

Right out of the gate, Hydrograd kicks off with a huge punched-in-the-face sounding heavy metal intro-“YSIF.” The song title, a wittingly cruel acronym that screams “You Suck In Full,” sets a powerfully metal tone for the rest of the album.

The album’s first full song, “Taipei Person/Allah Tea,” definitely keeps the metal vibe rolling.

I love this song because it throws out so many different genres at you almost immediately. Powered by Roy Mayorga’s thunderous double-set, the edgy thrash metal power chords brightly light up the furious melody that repeatedly hinges from hard rock coursing into thrash and alternative metal.

The vocal bars of the infectious chorus have Taylor belting out a catchy, high-pitched, harmonious tone unlike his vocal chops when he wears the mask. Only within the song’s verses do we hear the signature harrowing screams of Slipknot’s Corey Taylor. The intricate and dueling guitars of Josh Ram and Christian Martucci also add extra metal allure, and showcase the talents of the band’s two amazing guitarists.

Some songs have a more pop/punk rock feel, with the slowly chugging palm muted chords of Ram paired with the extremely catchy hooking riffs of Martucci echoing in the background, aka their #1 hit single “Song #3.”

Never before have we seen glam-metal Corey Taylor.

The video is proof that these dudes are totally having fun with this album, just like in the video for their more traditional hard rock jam, “Fabuless.”

Stone Sour playing for a crowd of wacky waving inflatable arm flailing tube men. Never thought I’d see it.

I also love a band who sounds just as good,  if not better, than they do live as on the album. To bring as much power and energy in a live performance as you bring in a studio with a number of carefully perfected takes is the mark of a great band. I knew I loved this album when I first saw them perform “Mercy,” live from Sphere studios.

Just so damn good. Everything is tight and on point- the musicianship of these guys is at a level that easily shows the band’s extreme levels of musical chemistry. Taylor has really impressed with his big, melodic vocal bars. You’d think that a guy who’s screamed so much in his musical career wouldn’t still have the beautifully pitched pipes Taylor has.

Any rock music fan who has a particular taste for alternative, hard rock, and metal should check out this album. Corey Taylor has been made famous by the music of Slipknot, but Stone Sour, the band Corey formed before the conception of the masked metal phenoms, are an entirely different animal, and give Taylor a platform to show off his incredible vocal range, and his ability to adapt and perform within alternating genres.

Get Stone Sour’s new album HERE.

Track list:

  1. YSIF
  2. Taipei Person/Allah Tea
  3. Knievel Has Landed
  4. Hydrograd
  5. Song #3
  6. Fabuless
  7. The Witness Trees
  8. Rose Red Violent Blue (This Song Is Dumb & So Am I)
  9. Thank God It’s Over
  10. St. Marie
  11. Mercy
  12. Whiplash Pants
  13. Friday Knights
  14. Somebody Stole My Eyes
  15. When The Fever Broke

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Rock On!
Michael Luzzi

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