[HOT TRACK]Grunge Mixed With Melody

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[HOT TRACK]Grunge Mixed With Melody

Fred Durst, the lead vocal of the pimp rock band Limp Bizkit, showered the band Staind with praise by claiming that it was "the best band that I've seen in two years" when he first heard Staind's demo tape in 1999. Since then, he introduced Staind to his record label and has been a mentor to the band. Titled "Break the Cycle," Staind's second album was recently brought to Korean rock fans.

Though the two bands frequently play together, the metal act out of Springfield, Mass., is in fact different from Limp Bizkit. While Durst's singing is more akin to frenzied screaming and the music of Limp Bizkit has a definite grunge feel, Staind pursues a harmony between hard-core rock sounds and tuneful melodies. This balance is possible through the expressive vocals of Aaron Lewis, who is true to form as a singer. Though Durst gained popularity for having a vocal range somewhere between a deep growl and a shout, he was the one who encouraged Lewis not to imitate other singers in the grunge genre. He advised Lewis to instead find his own path and make the most of his smooth voice.

Though the songs may have melodic vocals the band has not forgotten its roots in grunge rock. It features explosive, strong and often unexpected riffs from Mike Mushok on guitar, Johnny April on bass and Jon Wyscoki on drums. "Break the Cycle" is widely popular in the United States right now and has remained at the top of the Billboard charts for some time, while other similar bands like Radiohead have fallen by the wayside.

The new release has 14 tracks, including a live version of "Outside," with a guest appearance by Fred Durst. Lewis, who wrote all the lyrics for the songs, confessed that he had some reservations about writing after a number of adolescents committed suicide while listening to the band's first album "Dysfunction." As a result, he claims to have toned down the lyrics for the second album. Other listeners argue that the lyrics remain quite radical. In the song "For You," he sings, "To my mother, to my father. . . You don't know how to listen. . . All your insults and your curses make me feel like I'm not a person." Korean censors agree that the album may be unsuitable for certain age groups and have banned the album for buyers under the age of 18.

Other tracks such as "Take It" and "Change" are noteworthy for their brilliant guitar solos played in harmony with Lewis's powerful and emotional voice.

by Chun Su-jin

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