>> Madina Lake: World War III (2011)

Artist: Madina Lake

Album: World War III

Members: Nathan Leone, Matthew Leone, Mateo Camargo, Dan Torelli

Genre: Rock

Label: Razor and Tie Records

Tracks: 12

Type: Digital

Release Date: September 13, 2011

Rating: 0.80 (out of 4.00)

Grade: D-

Official Site

Madina Lake and I don't really have the best track record, as in their music has repulsed me from the first day I heard it, but I was hoping for a chance at redemption when I sat down to listen to World War III. No such luck, guys. The lyrics to the first track, "Howdy Neighbor!," made me feel like I was listening to a comedy album -- albeit a really, really bad one -- without being aware of it. That bad.

The rest of the album is more of the same borderline-laugh-out-loud nu-metal garbage. Not even the fact that this is a concept album (I love concept albums!) can salvage it. This is evidently the capstone to a trilogy of concept albums put out by Madina Lake revolving around a missing 1950s socialite. Uhhh... okay. If it had more elements of 50s rock in it, I would get it, but it just sounds like a bunch of over-produced, over-filtered computer noises. Too much echo, too much double-tracking, just too much. Mostly it's too much of the wrong focus. If you're going to do a concept album, you have to make sure that some element of that concept is present in every single track while still maintaining newness and fidelity to your sound. Above all, you have to commit. Madina Lake did not. It just sounds like one of their regular albums and they slapped a concept into the press release. Oh, and can I just say, "Fireworks" is simply awful. It's supposed to be the sexy song of the album, but it fails miserably. This particular genre doesn't lend itself very well to sexy (at least not for me), so it was a total and utter miss.

If faux-aggro, practically auto-tuned songs with lyrics that make zero sense and have no poignancy appeal to you, then absolutely pick this up. If not, give it a wide berth when you pass it at the record store. It detects close proximity and the creepy cover art will scare you into buying.

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