There’s plenty of metal out there, it’s like Earth was stuck by an iron nickel meteor and the atmosphere is still burning a bit. Rather than the wall-of-noise ripped vocals of most louder-faster-deafer groups, these guys are much more melodic than most. Amazingly I can make out the lyrics on the first listen: in “Rise Up” they sing perfectly in tune and asking for an ill-defined change in the situation. That’s the sign of good metal, and good music in general: it’s a call to action. Whatever your most pressing concerns might be, the music encourages you to change the world while you’re young enough to think you can, yet old enough to stay out until mom and dad fall asleep.
About midway through the album we run into a song of pure genius, or at least self-mocking introspection. That’s “Redneck Freak Show”. it seems to describe a Friday night at any Walmart parking lot south of the Mason-Dixon line. And that brings up another element of Saliva’s sound — while they keep to their metal roots, there’s bits of country sound on this collection. It’s not like they’ve retuned their guitars, but the balance in the audio mix is a little more tenor and not so much basso profundo. It’s like they CARE what they sound like, not just that there’re louder than anyone else within any given music festival radius. This is a band with a good look (black leather, black wrist bands, black facial hair, and maybe even black Underoos.) Shake your fist, bang your head but be prepared to take notes, this is metal with not just a melody but a real poetry.