“Rivals” is simplistic in nature. Coal Chamber deliver nothing short of energy and aggression in their latest album. It’s a high-octane affair but often such a prolonged session of intense pressure can strain the listener, although fans of Coal Chamber will know what to expect and will not be demanding fluid technical breaks, nor dazzling chord structure.
Though “Rivals” is simply one “genre” of music, it does however pace well and though most of the songs are an onslaught of guitar riffs and pounding bass, the writing is good enough to create a differentiation between the songs; rarely do they merge into one weak glob and instead are clearly defined, industrialised anthems. Their short and sweet nature too means they are savored, instead of making the listener think they are experiencing an exhibition of pretentiousness. Coal Chamber know their strengths and play to them well.
It is a solid album, that has to be said. However, it lacks something overly striking, like a lack of an instant classic. This can be a good thing as there’s no song with an easily exploitable melody, but that’s the paradox; most of the songs are catchy, and would serve brilliantly at a festival, however they just don’t reach that benchmark. Knowing most opinions, this point will be proved wrong in time.
In summary, it’s decent. Heavy, pounding and memorable. There’s plenty going on here to down your beer to and hope your beard grows longer. Whilst it’s not brilliant, it’ll serve well in their community and attract more listeners through the live performance where people will get moving to these songs.