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The Illusion of Progress

Nothing against Aaron Lewis, but “The Illusion of Progress” is why it’s so hard to get in touch with people about doing early album press. It doesn’t always go well. Sometimes what one band member thinks and what the other member thinks is completely different and they haven’t been in touch about everything. Sometimes one writes a lot of the music like Mike Mushok does and what he’s writing is completely different than what the other member thinks. Aaron Lewis said this was supposed to be Staind’s return to metal… it is not. That’s fine- I like Staind for what what they have developed into over the years. And “The Illusion of Progress” is more of a slow-ballad album than Staind has ever released… weird. Lucky for Staind “The Illusion of Progress” happens to be the best set of songs that Staind has come out with since “Break the Cycle.” Most of what it is lyrically is typical Staind content- self-loathe and discovery with a few different moments in between. Mushok creates his typical riff-stylage in different styles which I have no idea how he plays that stuff live. And the rhythm section fills things out. As far as songs goes everything is decent. Especially through the first five tracks. “Believe” is the single as it should be… it’s pretty much the general Staind single. And “All I Want” is the 2008 version of “How About You.” The album finishes off well too- “Nothing Left to Say” is my favorite closing song from Staind and a perfect song to close out an interesting set from these guys. So while “The Illusion of Progress” is an apt title for this because there’s not a lot of progress on this album and there’s not a lot on this album that you haven’t heard from Staind- this is what Staind does best. Intelligent guitar a lot of heart-felt lyrics and generally just good songs. This isn't Staind’s best set, but it’s an improvement from recent releases. And that’s something that fans can be happy about.


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