Papa Roach, much like the insect with whom they share their name are seemingly unstoppable, having been through things during the course of their near 20 year career that would have killed most bands off, it’s a testament that they are still standing, and in a lot ways they are better than they ever have been.
Returning with the follow up to 2009’s “Metamorphosis” Papa Roach brings us “The Connection”. The title, Jacoby Shaddix says, represents the connection the band has with themselves, their fans and the connection people have to music as a whole, its hard to argue that point because on this album the band lays themselves out for the fans to see and feel everything.
Written during a time of emotional turmoil, the emotions on this album are palpable, ranging from the defiant (Still Swingin’) all the way to the heartbroken and lost (Breathe You In, Not That Beautiful) as well as seeking redemption (Before I Die), all bases are covered in typical Papa Roach fashion. “The Connection” is the most consistent album the band has made in nearly a decade, it seems in a lot of ways like a continuation of what they did on “LoveHateTragedy”, they seem to have come full circle, and look to have found who they really are.
To para phrase one of the band’s other hits, on “The Connection” Papa Roach are tearing their hearts open in order to sew themselves shut and put their issues to rest.
The riffs are bigger, the choruses catchier, and the venom more potent than ever before. “The Connection” is a perfect storm. One of those rare occasions where a band sets out to write an album and everything just clicks, and the very best is left on display. Papa Roach also managed to rope in James Michael, the voice of Sixx:AM to produce the album and work with the band, which also explains why everything has such a deep emotional impact, this is after all the man who gave emotional resonance to the life and times of Nikki Sixx.
‘The Connection’ is an important album for Papa Roach, after the disappointment of “Metamorphosis” and the luke warm reception the newer material on the “Time For Annihilation” compilation, “The Connection” seems like a real return to form and is probably the band’s best album to date, and the album that may see some of the bands older fans back to the fold.
Papa Roach are back and better than ever, if you are one of those people that wrote them off after the nu metal bubble burst then you’ve really been missing out and now would be the perfect time to give the band another look because you’d be stupid to let an album this good pass you by.
Despite Jacoby Shaddix’s recent throat surgery that saw the band pull their US tour last month, Papa Roach return to the UK for two shows with Stone Sour at London’s Brixton Academy on December 10th and 11th along with a string of other European dates.