There’s a whole hell of a lot of shitty EDM (Electronic Dance Music) floating about these days, and it ALL. SOUNDS. THE. SAME. I’m honestly not trying to be an old codger about it, but that’s how it is. You can stack just about any “trance” techno song over another and hear no differences. Now, all negativity aside, there are some front runners to the genre that help steer it in new directions, but… What about the underground kings? The ones that don’t pop up on top 40 radio because of a shiesty remix of another top 40 shit show song?
Enter PUSCIFER, Maynard James Keenan’s electronic oddity. If you know who TOOL and A PERFECT CIRCLE are, then I’m sure you know who I’m talking about by now, but if you’re unfamiliar with it, basically Keenan’s PUSCIFER is a musical ‘playground’ so-to-speak. A project with no discernible direction, or precise agenda. One would think that something so ambiguous couldn’t really generate a cohesive album worth listening to, but one would be entirely wrong. Now I want to say, this shit is WEIRD, but in a totally vibey and cool way. This isn’t for fans of ‘Dub Step’ or ‘Trap’ music, or whatever the hell the kids are calling it nowadays unless you have a very open palette when it comes to musical taste, and are willing to accept other electronic elements which those genres encompass.
From what I’ve said so far, Money Shot (Oct 30, Puscifer Entertainment) must sound like some sort of synthesized creature entirely made in a computer, but honestly, 75% of it seems to be real instrumentation. Most of the drums, most of the bass, guitars, and certainly the vocals are all real, but it’s the incorporation of the synthesized elements that set this apart, and make it an almost EDM/Punk/Industrial Rock album.
This is one of those creations that I highly suggest you grab a pair of super high quality headphones and lay in the middle of a dark room for. Some of the songs (namely “Money Shot”, and “The Remedy”) carry an aggressive tone, while pieces like “Grand Canyon” and “The Arsonist” have more of an atmospheric vibe, and are calmer, but the whole album carries a certain…feeling. I don’t quite know how to put my finger on it. There aren’t really any big plainly phrased choruses or anything, which I find totally refreshing, as the standard ‘verse-bridge-chorus-verse-chorus-end’ formula can be quite a drag. Keenan steers VERY clear of that musical blueprint, and pretty much just does whatever the fuck he wants.
His voice is one that is unmistakable, and very powerful or soft whenever he needs it to be, which means the vocal delivery throughout the album is quite varied, and shows every color of his emotions. Honestly…I really can’t think of a bad thing to say about this piece of work. Money Shot is simply one man’s imagination running wild in a studio. The mix is great, the songs don’t get stale, and it changes over the course of the whole release, from damn near “heavy” songs, to strange pieces with a conversation happening over most of it (see “Simultaneous”). Like I said before, kick back in a place where no one’s going to bother you, and just let this shit unfold in your ears for a while. Trust me, you won’t regret it.
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Simultaneous”, “The Remedy”