Something Like Human
550 Music/Epic Music Group
Before I even get into the music on this CD, I have to comment on the packaging and what all is included on the CD itself. I think I am more impressed with what the CD offers in “extras” than I am with what everyone will buy this CD for in the first place, and that’s the music. Within the CD itself is a basic “press kit” with a rather lengthy interview and a live footage movie, a link to the Fuel official Web site, and even a screensaver for the hardcore Fuel fanatics to advertise their favorite band right there on their own idle computer monitor. It made a huge difference for me in reviewing this CD to sit and watch the movie included on the CD and get to see what kind of people are putting out the music I am about to experience. (By the way, if you want to have a funny guy who could be the life of the party, invite Fuel’s drummer, Kevin Miller, to the function! He has an awesome sense of humor!) Hats off to marketing and promotion people at 550 Music for such a nice and well-rounded introduction the Fuel themselves in this CD package. Yeah, yeah, I know: A lot of bands have these things on their CDs these days, but this one is extra nice. Believe me!
Something Like Human starts off with the crashing “Last Time,” and it is a good way to kick it all off as it is probably the best “rocker” on the whole recording. Come out kicking and offering your best stuff is a great idea, and Fuel played on that notion. The other, harder-edged tunes on this CD don’t quite live up to “Last Time”‘s enormous power. While Fuel does seemingly crave to kick people in their teeth with power and force, they fall short at times, especially with the tune “Scar.” I couldn’t make it through the first few wailings of lead vocalist Brett Scallions before I had to switch to the next track. Same thing happened with “Down.” Some of the better tracks on the rough and rowdy side of this CD are “Hemorrhage” and “Prove,” which comes across sounding eerily like Alice In Chains. Honestly, the place where Fuel shines on Something Like Human is the slower and mellower tunes. I keep playing “Bad Day” over and over, and the next to the last track “Innocent” is quite the song to dredge up some serious emotions. All in all, it’s one of the better productions I’ve heard all year. It gets a little weak and confusing on the harder-edged tunes (with the exception of “Hemorrhage” and “Last Time”) when the verses don’t seem to flow well into the choruses, but the more mellow tunes make up for the lack in the harder songs.
Epic, 550 Madison, 22nd Floor, New York, NY 10022-3211