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CD REVIEW: Coal Chamber – Rivals

| 2 July 2015 | Reply

CD REVIEW: Coal Chamber – Rivals
19 May, 2015
Reviewed by Shayne McGowan

Coal Chamber - Rivals cover

There’s reunions that are awesome (Faith No More), reunions that we could do without (New Kids on the Block springs to mind), and then there are reunions that you didn’t know you wanted until they happen. Coal Chamber falls in to this category for me. I was a fan of the band during their first run, but when they fell apart in 2003, I moved on to Dez’s new project Devildriver, and aside from chucking on a Coal Chamber album occasionally, that was the end of it.

Much like Faith No More, Coal Chamber reunited for a string of festival dates around the world, and they had no initial plans of making new music. After a few years of playing live, the creative juices were obviously flowing again, and working relationships were steady enough to make a new record.

The resulting record is Rivals, and it is one hell of a triumphant return.

From the opening riff of I.O.U Nothing, the band is firing on all cylinders. Coal Chamber have taken the nu metal styling of the early 2000’s and modernized the sound for the current day. This has far more in common with a Pantera album, than it does a Limp Bizkit disc. Personally, I’ve always felt that Coal Chamber had nothing in common with the Bizkit, and were a cut above the rest of the nu metal crowd, along with the likes of Sevendust, Deftones and Disturbed.

Rivals takes a healthy dose of the Coal Chamber sound from all three of its predecessors, but ultimately has more in common with Dark Days from 2002, than it does with their self-titled debut from ’97, or Chamber Music from ’99. I think that all of the band members also bring a maturity and a more positive attitude than they may have had back in the day.

Aside from the opening track; Bad Blood Between Us, Suffer in Silence (featuring Al Jourgensen from Ministry), Another Nail in the Coffin and the title track are the hands down highlights of this disc for me personally, but there is a lot to like everywhere else as well.

This is groove metal. The kind of music that chugs along at a great pace, and makes you pump your fist, bang your head and stomp your feet… sometimes all at once. It’s a series of punches in the face, and I love it.

Welcome back, Coal Chamber!

Category: CD Reviews

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