Adrenaline Mob is a new supergroup featuring some big names in rock music today. The brain-child of drummer Mike Portnoy, the album also features names like Russell Allen, Mike Orlando, Rich Ward, and Paul DiLeo. Though they come from different genres, their combined talents are...
Okay, you know what? I can't fucking do this. I just can't.
Mike Portnoy is an amazingly gifted musician. Simply listening to the technical complexity of bands Liquid Tension Experiment and Office of Strategic Influence or the raw emotive power of his combined lyric work and drumming in Dream Theater's “Twelve-step Suite” is enough to make me feel humbled. Yet the man seems to want nothing more than to squander this talent writing dime-a-dozen hard rock. And you know what? If that makes the man happy, fine, so be it. But putting out something as soulless, as absolutely terrible as Adrenaline Mob is just pitiful.
You want me to talk about the music? It's lame, alternative metal / hard rock. That's it. Nothing new, nothing fancy, nothing challenging. It's just some otherwise incredibly talented musicians coming together and wasting everyone's time. Seriously. You'd think on a hard rock album we'd at least get some enjoyable guitar riffs, but this album is so over-bloated with unnecessary guitar flair and uninteresting writing that none of the riffs are even remotely enjoyable. The lyrics are just as painful to hear. There's absolutely no imagination to be found in them—this is the kind of stuff I could ask a third grader to write. Even Russell Allen's normally wonderful singing sounds painful here. It's like listening to the mistake that was Atomic Soul over and over again, except even less enjoyable. This isn't even guilty pleasure music; this is all just flat out annoying. I could dissect this for another four or five paragraphs, but I really don't think that's necessary. This album just isn't worth that much of your time.
In fact, there are a dozen other albums you could be listening to featuring these musicians instead of this one. If you want to hear some sweet Mike Portnoy drumming, go pick up Liquid Tension Experiment or Images and Words. You want to hear Russell Allen singing well? Go listen to Symphony X's Paradise Lost. Want to hear Mike Orlando doing some sweet guitar work? Go pick up Sonic Stomp. Rich Ward? Fozzy's new album Chasing the Grail. Paul DiLeo? Nena's Willst du mit mir gehen?. You have so many options to hear these musicians doing wonderful music, and this album isn't it.
Everything about this album reeks of hasty, ill-advised one-upmanship. The bland music, the short run time, the terribly rushed and unimaginative album cover, the uninspired lyrics, the pre-emptive release date, the terribly derivative logo design—all of this feels like Portnoy is just giving Dream Theater the middle finger, not making an earnest attempt at a new musical endeavour. The man has the capability to do great things, and this album isn't one of them.
1.5 / 10
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