A Perfect Circle
label: Virgin Records
our score: 4.0 out of 5.0
giving this album repeated listens, I have concluded this to myself:
everything Maynard James Keenan touches turns to gold. He can
do no wrong. 11 years ago, he separated himself from the rest
of the grunge pack with his incredible voice and intricate instrumentation.
Now, more than a decade later, his second band releases The
Thirteenth Step, the album that fans of Keenan have been
waiting for. Because A Perfect Circle is traditionally a bit more
melodic than Tool, we get a better showcase of his brilliant voice,
backed by complex instrumentation.
first single, “Weak and Powerless”, while already
blowing up at rock radio, is a great representation of the rest
of the album. It starts out with the familiar chords, and you
keep waiting for the distortion to come and for it to get much
harder. But it doesn’t and it’s a great change of
pace. And while Thirteenth Step doesn’t have as
much stand-out songs as Mer De Noms did, (“3 Libras”
is one of the finest rock songs of the past few years, in my opinion)
it has its share of great tunes. “The Nurse Who Loved Me”
is just about as delicate as A Perfect Circle gets. It’s
not the strongest track, but Keenan’s voice backed by strings
is very close to pure bliss. But it all turns around with “The
Outsider” and “Pet”, the album’s hardest
tracks. It almost brings us a half a step back to the AEnima
album may take a few listens to sink in, like all other works
Keenan has done, but it is definitely a rewarding experience.
It is always interesting to see where Keenan is on his quest for
spiritual truth- on Lateralus he seemed to be on his
way to finding something, and this album further establishes that.
It takes a step in a new direction in the evolution of A Perfect
Circle. While everyone else on the modern rock scene is either
screaming or head banging, they do their own thing by bringing
REAL music back. I respect them deeply for that. It will disappoint
those looking for the screaming guitars, but please those that
love them because they add depth to hard rock. The mainstream
really needs a dose of this album right now.
liked Thirteenth Step...
1. The Package
2. Weak And Powerless
3. The Noose
6. A Stranger
7. The Outsider
9. The Nurse Who Loved Me