Tidal Catalog #15 (Update #1): Korn

The fun part of these Tidal catalogs now is that they are living documents. As new official records get released, I will go ahead and update them moving forward so that they always stay current. You can reference the original post, here.

On 9/13/19 Korn released their 13th studio album, The Nothing. If you go back to the original post and read my overall review, what you’ll see is that while I’m not really a Korn fan, I liked the albums they made that didn’t stick to their established sound and really pushed some boundaries. What I read about the new record before it was released is that it was a “mature” record, deeply personal and honest as the lyrics reflected upon Jonathan Davis’ wife’s death in 2018 and that it strayed from the usual Korn sound. Since I hated the previous record in 2016, I figured this would be another one I welcome with open arms. I’m torn though. Musically, it’s not the retread Korn bullshit they put out on The Serenity of Suffering but it’s not nearly as different a path as they took on Take A Look in the Mirror. That’s not to say there’s nothing different. “The Seduction of of Indulgence” is just atmosphere and drums which creates a pretty haunting feel. But what really stands out though are the unique vocal stylings of Davis. He’s always been one-of-a-kind but on this he wails from the despair of his wife’s death. Some artists play off tragedy for art but come across as doing it for show. Davis is totally believable on this album. His cries on the opening track and screams in agony on many others and everyone of these feels like a breakdown in the studio. And while that sounds terrible at a human level, it makes for a fascinating experience on disc and after listening pretty closely, it’s hard to imagine how he could possibly fake those emotions. In the end, it’s a pretty engaging album. If you draw a line in the sand which is the nu-metal sound you know from Korn, this album is definitely on the side towards the more eclectic version of the group. Very little on this feels nu-metal but rather a wholly unique rock band making rock music. No matter how my feelings on Korn end up fluctuating album-over-album, I can respect them for continuing to make music that literally no one else is making.

Korn, “Idiosyncrasy”
  • Album: Korn – The Nothing
  • Rating: 8.5/10
  • Adjusted Summary: 15 albums, Average rating: 6.5

Tidal Catalog #2 (Update #1): Iggy Pop

The fun part of these Tidal catalogs now is that they are living documents. As new official records get released, I will go ahead and update them moving forward so that the always stay current. You can reference the original post, here.

On August 6th, Iggy Pop released his 18th solo record, Free – the title of which refers to the fact that he was no longer on what he called an exhausting tour to support his previous record. Sounds like at 72, age is finally catching up to him. After the short intro track, the record opens up with “Loves Missing” which sounds like a vintage Iggy Pop rock tune, but don’t let that fool you into thinking another Lust for Life is here.

Most of the album was written or co-written with Leron Thomas, a jazz trumpeter at heart but really an eclectic genre crossing artist. As Pop gets older he continues to get more experimental at every turn and Free is a great example of this. The album is somewhat jazzy, sometimes rocks (“Dirty Sanchez”) and often is spoken word (“Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night” “We are the People”). At only 33 minutes long, the album kind of comes and goes but shows that Iggy Pop is going to do whatever the fuck he wants to do at this point in his career.

Iggy Pop, “Dirty Sanchez”
  • Album: Free
  • Rating: 8/10
  • Summary: 27 albums, 7.9 average