Disturbed: Immortalized review

Having been going non-stop since their inception in 1998, the members of Disturbed desperately needed a break to clear their heads and purse other musical endeavors, so they could come back stronger than ever. After that much needed four year hiatus, Disturbed are back with a vengeance with their newest opus for Reprise and sixth studio album overall entitled Immortalized and if the early sales numbers are any indication, it was well worth the wait. Immortalized has sold 98,000 copies in just the first week and is the band’s fifth consecutive album to debut at #1 on the US Billboard Top 200 Chart, even with illegal downloading running rampant. The only 2 other bands in music history to achieve this milestone are Metallica and Dave Matthews Band. The album was recorded at The Hideout recording studios with producer Kevin Churko, who brought in a much needed fresh perspective to the recording process, was mastered by Ted Jensen and contains brutal illustrations by artist Raymond Swanland. Now right off the bat, we should mention that Churko’s involvement did not cause the band to reinvent themselves or the wheel by any means. You see, much like bands like AC/DC or Iron Maiden, Disturbed too have found a sound they like, that works for them and are sticking with it. In fact, not too long ago, there was a video uploaded to YouTube called The Greatest Hit of Disturbed that hilariously lampooned the band for the similarities in all their music. Which believe it or not, David Drainman then shared on the Disturbed website, showing he has a sense of humor about the subject. Having said all that, you instantly realize the line “Secure a legacy that will never die, Be immortalized,” from the title track “Immortalized” that leads off the album, is actually a statement of intent, not just a song lyric. While the animated video for “The Vengeful One,” which has received four and a half million views in just six weeks, is an attack on news media that proves this band has balls as big as their sound and will not shy away or back down from sensitive subject matter. Elsewhere, “Open Your Eyes” encourages the listener to open their eyes to the lies, hate and deception that surrounds them on a daily basis. While tracks like “What Are You Waiting For” and “Who” throw more hooks at you than a prize fighter and find Drainman revisiting the primal grunts that fans have come to love and expect. Meanwhile, “The Light” may be the most melodic and mainstream song they’ve offered to date and just begs for repeat radio airplay, while “You’re Mine” sees the band step out of their comfort zone to take a shot at their first love song, but don’t expect piano and a string section, cause this isn’t your typical ballad.Fire It Up” is a super melodic, loving homage to marijuana that begins with someone hitting a bong and “Save Our Last Goodbye” is a loving homage of a different kind to the pain that comes from the loss of a close friend. At the same time “Sound of Silence” finds Drainman digging deep into his lower register to deliver an out of this world rendition of the Simon & Garfunkel classic that is sure to enthrall fans of Type O Negative and “Never Wrong” is about that person we all know that you just can’t talk to and often want to punch in the face cause they’re “Never wrong, never ever wrong. Closer “Who Taught You to Hate” is a reflective song dedicated to Drainman’s son Samuel, based on his observation that all children are born without hate and learn it somewhere later in life, that finishes the album off as powerfully as it began. Here’s the bottom line. If you liked any of the band’s last five albums, you’re going to absolutely love Immortalized, as it is easily the band’s strongest and most consistent collection of songs in a decade. Rating: 9 out of 10 -Eric Hunker