A & E
Chevelle: a new sound, new label and a brand new record
Who knew, that Chevelle, three brothers from the Midwest, would break into the music world displaying such a powerfully exciting new sound, geting hardly any support from their label. Yet, somehow they trudged on, earning them selves a highly coveted spot on the last Ozzfest tour; in turn, getting them the kind of exposure they desperately needed. As well, amidst all the chaos they somehow found the time to record their second album "Wonder what's next".
Chevelle's latest album shows that the brothers have matured sonically since releasing their debut "Point #1". The sound on "Wonder what's next" is noticeably harder, possibly reflecting their stint on the Ozzfest tour where the bill is lined with bands that are faster, angrier and louder than your average band. Although the overall sound on the CD might be different, the elements that separate Chevelle from other bands are still present:
Lead singer and guitarist Pete Loeffler's vocals are still as hauntingly powerful, and his lyrics reflect an honesty not heard in a lot of today's music. As well brother Sam on drums and brother Joe on bass form a rhythm section that perfectly ads to sparseness and syncopated riffs that are pumped out of Pete's guitar.
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There are a lot of great tracks on "Wonder what's next". The album starts off with "Family system", a loud aggressive rocker where Loeffler reflects on the negative role of a father in family life by singing, "what a man's got he'll learn to hate."
The second track "Comfortable Liar" shows how much the band "Helmet" has had an influence on the brothers. The song is loud and commanding; the guitar work is sparse, punctuated with hard drumming and rumbling bass work. It's not just a coincidence; the boys have publicly stated that "Helmet" is one of their biggest influences.
The Subject matter in "Wonder what's next", as shown in the Lyrics, shows Loeffler's growth as a songwriter. "Closure", reflects the part of a relationship when the end is at hand, "closure has come to me, myself, you will never belong to me".
Another goodie on the album is the title track, the riff here is loud and demonic it sent a chill down my spine upon hearing it. The best track on the album is called "An evening with el Diablo", the guitar work is great and the bass and drums compliment perfectly. The lyrical content was really powerful, the line "you display good traits, though few" stuck in my head long after hearing the song.
The last song shows that the brothers "Chevelle" aren't afraid to do something different by putting an acoustic song with just Pete on vocals and guitar as last track on the album. The purposeful live sound and sparse production on the track makes it really powerful considering the subject matter of depression and loneliness that surfaces after a relationship.
I really recommend, "Wonder what's next" to anybody with open ears or a hunger for a new sound in rock. "Chevelle" didn't just faze out like a lot of the bands out there today, they did one of the hardest things for a band to do in the rock world; they stuck around.
© 2002 Shoreline Community College