Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

The Record Vault: Disturbed – Asylum

August 31, 2010 was the release date. 11 years old.

The cover opens up to reveal the Disturbed mascot trying to break out of the Asylum straps.

“Asylum” is the fifth studio album by Disturbed.

It was their fourth consecutive number one album in the U.S.. The other two bands ever to accomplish this feat in the Soundscan era are Metallica and Dave Matthews Band. Good company they keep.

It was also self-produced and keeping within the “it ain’t broke” formula.

Remnants

An instrumental which showcases Dan Donegan on the guitar. Some of the lead sections remind me of Criss Oliva from Savatage.

It was meant to be one song with “Asylum” but split into two as the label didn’t want the title track to be 7 minutes long, in case it messed up it’s chances of radio play.

Asylum

“Remnant” fades into the title track as a fast bass riff rumbles and then all hell breaks loose.

“Release Me” barks David Draiman.

The “Asylum” has a dual meaning, with the concept of a person losing a loved one as both an asylum driving the person insane, as well as a place of comfort.

The Infection

The major key verse riff is different from the minor key fast Intro. And I like the contrast.

A relationship song that likens the feelings you experience after a break-up to an infection.

There is this head banging riff which kicks in at 2.20, which Donegan then solos over.

And did I mention that the Chorus is melodically massive.

Warrior

A foot stomping open string pedal point riff starts the song off. Almost thrash like.

Another Way To Die

About global warming.

The arpeggios in the Intro give way to a rocker rooted in the blues. The main riff is played staccato like, in a similar way to ZZ Top and how Billy Gibbons plays “La Grange”.

Never Again

About the Nazi Holocaust in World War II.

The riffs are excellent. Pure fury.

The lead breaks feel angry and demented. And there’s a crazy sweep lick thrown in.

The Animal

When midnight comes and man turns to a wolf. Queue up Metallica, “Of Wolf And Man”.

Donegan also takes control of this track with his groove riffs.

Crucified

Another song about a broken relationship.

I almost pressed skip the first time I heard it because the Intro and verses didn’t connect, but then the Chorus kicked in.

Serpentine

Wikipedia tells me it’s about a demonic woman who “utilizes her sexuality to prey on the weaknesses of men.”

Ummm. So what’s the problem.

The Intro riffs and wah drenched melodic lead gets me to pay attention every single time.

My Child

About a miscarriage and dealing with the mental fallout. The sounds of a flatline at the end brings home the reality of it.

Sacrifice

A song about how people seem to have two sides to their personality, a light and a dark side.

With a massive PANTERA inspired riff to create the darkness with.

Innocence

The Intro riff is Rammstein industrial like, which is perfect for a song about “corrupt attorneys and the criminals that they choose to defend.”

Check out the Chorus riff and melodic lead.

ISHFWILF

A cover of “I Still Haven’t Found What I”m Looking For” from U2 done in a Disturbed way.

It was certified Gold in Australia, New Zealand and the U.S. and it was certified Silver in the U.K

There’s no doubt that Draiman is one of the premier and easily identifiable voices in Rock and Metal these days.

And like other hard rock singers he stays within the box he created with the debiut. Sometimes the vocal patterns could be interchanged with the vocal patterns of other songs.

But, that’s why we like Disturbed.

And I still haven’t watched the “Decade Of Disturbed” DVD. But I will.

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Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

The Record Vault: Disturbed – Ten Thousand Fists

After the excellent “Believe”, I was eagerly anticipating this release and I was a first day buyer. The cartoonish comic cover got my attention, as people from all walks of life are together, raising their firsts in the air.

Released in 2005, “Ten Thousand Fists” is the third studio album from Disturbed.

John Moyer joins David Draiman, Dan Donegan and Mike Wengren this time around. However, Moyer was considered a session musician during the time of recording, and only became a full-time member during the tour supporting the album.

Johnny K is also producing. This would be his last album with the band.

The album was also dedicated to Dimebag Darrell, who was murdered the year before the album’s release.

“Ten Thousand Fists”

A great song about the metal show and the glorious sight of “ten thousand fists in the air”.

Musically its classic Disturbed, in which the vocal melody follows the syncopated drum and guitar riff in the verses.

The Chorus’s by now have become anthemic for Disturbed.

You will remember the night you were struck by the sight of ten thousand fists in the air

The interlude with the backwards guitars gives it all a Middle Eastern vibe. Check it out.

“Just Stop”

Another killer riff to start the song off. Check.

Verses is syncopated, with riffs, vocals and bass drum. Check.

Anthemic chorus. Check.

Just stop enough of the limitless critical comments on my life
Just drop the judgment and all of your pseudo-involvement in my life

We might see our Metal hero’s as indestructible, but they are normal like all of us and they have feelings, which do get hurt within relationships.

“Guarded”

A speed metal cut, as it comes racing out with double kick drums and fast alternate picked lines.

Guarding yourself from the love of another
Left you with nothing tonight

How much are you willing to let people in?

Then it goes into an arpeggio riff that reminds me of Coverdale/Page’s “Whisper A Prayer For The Dying”.

“Deify”

“Deify” means to worship someone or treat as a god.

The song starts off with a sampled speech of George W Bush Jnr before it cranks into an angry song against the Bush administration.

I won’t let them
Deify you
They view you as the new messiah
Deify you
Renew belief in some demented man

It’s a divisive time. A lot of people disagreed with our Government’s at sending soldiers into Iraq and Afghanistan. And look how that’s worked out for Afghanistan at the moment. And Iraq hasn’t been stable since.

Check out the speed metal in the Interlude.

“Stricken”

One of my favourite tracks on the album. It has a groove riff similar to “Remember” in the intro.

The Chorus is anthemic as you would expect by now.

And finally Dan Donegan shreds.

2005 was the era for guitarist who didn’t normally shred on albums to start shredding.

“I’m Alive”

Another song with an anthemic chorus.

How good is that Tool like groove in the Bridge?

There will never be a reason why I will surrender to your advice
To change myself, I’d rather die

Would you rather fail doing it your way or on someone else’s advice?

“Sons Of Plunder”

The dog and bird barks are back vocally with the catchcry “Tell me you like it” as Disturbed rocks the new metal sounds in the verses and goes all anthemic in the Chorus.

At 1.53 it goes into this bass feel that reminds me of “My Friend Of Misery”. But the way the guitars and drums build it back up, needs to be listened to.

Lyrically Draiman is attacking artists that create soulless songs just to have a hit.

You say you’ve found yourself a new sound
The shit’s loaded and ready to go
A bit too much just like the old sound
Already heard it for the hundredth time
One hundred more, all have the same sound
Running around with all the sheep that you know
“It’s so sublime, they’re breaking new ground”
“They’re sure to have another hit this time”

It sounds like the decline of Hard Rock music between 1988 and 1992.

I’m still surrounded by the “new sound”
I’ve had enough and I’m ready to go
A strangle-hold throughout the world now
The new obsession will fade in time
A thin reminder of the past now
All convoluted hardly ready to go
Their whines and moans will never last now
I think you’ve given us our fill this time

And the Grunge came (“the new sound”) that took over the world only to see if fade within 5 years.

“Overburdened”

The bass riff again echoes an influence of “My Friend Of Misery” with a bit of the “Orion” interlude and “Rime Of The Ancient Mariner” interlude chucked in.

Then it becomes a groove cut, reminding me of Tool. And all of those little references to songs I know, makes me like this song a little bit more and it also gets me to check out those influences.

Lyrically it’s about war.

Check out the anthemic Chorus.

At 3.54, the Bridge begins. The riff is like ascending before it descends giving an eerie feeling.

At 4.26, Donegan clicks on the wah-wah pedal and we get another lead break. His style is more bluesy, but when needed he can break out some fast legato lines or alternate picked lines.

And the song ends the way it started, with the bass riff.

“Decadence”

A throwback to the debut in the intro and verses but the Chorus is the new Disturbed. Anthemic and melodic.

“Forgiven”

How good is the interlude/bridge section between 2.00 and 2.43 and then Donegan breaks out another lead break?

“Land Of Confusion”

The Genesis song from 1986 gets disturb-iz-ied.

This is the world we live in
And these are the hands we’re given
Use them and let’s start trying
To make it a place worth living in

This is truth, but how many are willing to risk being uncomfortable.

There’s a perceived safety in comfort so we put up with our Government’s invasion of our privacy and removing more liberties in the name of security and keeping us safe.

“Sacred Lie”

Verses like the debut album. Check.

Anthemic Chorus. Check.

Massive drumming. Check.

My conviction is stronger today
As I fight to uncover your sacred lie
And the fear isn’t going away
As the soldiers still die

Remember the war on “weapons of mass destruction”. The biggest bullshit ever.

“Pain Redefined”

Read the comments for “Sacred Lie”, but this one has a lot more electronics, like “The Game” from the debut.

Then again, how can I not mention the massive Chorus.

“Avarice”

Avarice means extreme greed for wealth or material gain.

So we get a speed metal barrage to finish the album off just to show the anger.

Politics and evil
All one in the same
Satan hides behind a different name

There is a small demented chromatic like lead break I like which kicks in over an ascending chord progression.

In Australia, it was certified Platinum. In Canada, it was certified 2× Platinum. In New Zealand, it was certified Gold. In the United Kingdom, it was certified Gold and in the United States, its certified 2× Platinum.

It charted well in a lot of other European countries. It was everywhere.

P.S. All the solos on the record are excellent. Kudos to Dan Donegan for stepping up.

P.S.S. This is Disturbed at their best and itt’s a great addition to any Heavy Metal Collection.

P.S.S.S. The “wah-ha-ah-ah!” scream is still there.

Wah-ha-ah-ah to it. Crank It.

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