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I have titled this review 'listen at your own risk' because this is an album (and band) that really takes an open minded ear to appreciate.
The album opens with 'Undead' which really sets in what Hollywood Undead are about. It opens with a synth version of Ozzy Osbourne's 'Crazy Train' then boom's into the chanting of 'Undead'. The whole song really gives you a feel of what they're about, as it's a mixture of pretty much every style they include on the album. It has it's metal vibe, as well as it's rap. It also has a good mix of the seriousness of the band as well as the humor and what some would describe as 'offensiveness'.
Next up we have 'Sell Your Soul' which focuses mainly on good lyrics and getting across a message, as opposed to 'Everywhere I Go' which is the third track on Swan Songs. This song is the total opposite to Sell Your Soul, and really shows the diversity of this album. It's a very un-serious, fun song, though a warning to those easily offended and those underage... it does contain a lot of strong content.
The rest of the album tends to follow a similar trend, with songs such as "No Other Place", "No. 5" and "Pimpin'" being... not so serious... whereas "Young", "This Love, This Hate" and "Paradise Lost" are songs that send out a message, and let you know that Hollywood Undead can have fun whilst taking their band and their lives seriously.
It's definitely a contrasting album in terms of music genres, but if you aren't easily offended, and you like a good mix of rap and metal, it's definitely the album for you.
"Hollywood Undead" are a rap/rock band who became popular on Myspace and managing to get a record deal, making this album, "Swan Songs".
The band features 6 members, and they all contribute on the vocals. One in particular, (Charlie Scene) sounds nearly identical to Eminem although he plays guitar. The different vocals work well in the songs, as each member has a different style of rapping and this is one of the strong points of the band.
The band all wear hockey masks while performing, I think this is to get more into their character, as each member uses a different name while performing. These "characters" rap about partying, drinking and getting women in nearly all of the songs and the lyrics are very explicit, so this isn't a CD you can play with childen present. These explicit lyrics are shown on the two stadout tracks, "Undead" and "Everywhere I Go". Undead is a true rap-rock song, with heavy guitars,pounding drums and
an F.U. attidute. "Everywhere I go" is a funny song about partying featuring a cool keyboard line throughout.
Don't get me wrong, Hollywood Undead do have a more thoughtful side to their lyrics, mainly in "This Love, This Hate" and "Young". "Young" is the best song on the album, an anthem for the disenchanted youth featuring a choir of kids in the chorus.
It is a shame Hollywood Undead can't keep up this level of consistency as their is a lot of filler tracks on this album, such as the uninspired "No. 5". But for their debut album it is pretty good and I look forward to seeing more from this band in the future.
Hollywood Undead:Swan Songs
Hollywood Undead are a new band on the scene, hey are Nu-Metal but absoloutley brilliant! However they are parental advisory so any younger kids in the house shouldnt really listen to this as they do swear alot and use some very immature words.
I'm getting sick of hearing that this band are trying to be like slipknot, they aren't, just because they wear masks does not mean in any way that they are trying to be like slipknot!!
The Producer = Aron Erlichman
J-Dog = Jorel Decker
Charlie Scene = Jordan Terrell
Funny Man = Dylan Alvarez
Da Kurlzz = Matt St Claire
Johnny 3 Tears = George Ragan
Charlie Scene actually sounds a lot like Eminem, though he isn't.
The band actually started in 2005 on MySpace and by November 2008 they had over 440,000 fans, yes that's a lot of fans.
This is an amazing track; I first heard this on Kerrang! It has a good video during the day where it is censored and some parts are cut out. The Lyrics are awesome and easy to remember. This track really shows the metal side with the guitarring.
Sell Your Soul 5/5
This track is great, It has a catchy rhythm and some excellent vocals probably one of the best on the whole album because this is another one that truly brings out the metal side and the screaming is just insanely amazing.
Everywhere I Go 4/5
This is actually more of a humour track where they are making remarks about Charlie Scene it is inappropriate but if you have a sense of humour or can at least see that this is only for a laugh you will be able to find it funny. So really you do have to have a sense of humour for this track.
No Other Place 4/5
This track has great vocals during the chorus and some ace rapping for the verse. This track is a pure example that this band are totally awesome.
This is a great track, It has a great beat and an awesome guitar rhythm. I love the little comments as the backing vocals. This is another track that you need to have a sense of humour for really, Most of the tracks on this album you need a sense of humour for.
This is a serious track from this band and I think it is just flawless. It has great lyrics and some awesome vocals. They bought in a choir of kids for a bit of backing vocals especially at the beginning and end.
Black Dahlia 5/5
There is quite a bit of swearing in this track but it still continues to amaze me. This track is quite deep also I would explain it but it is too damn difficult to put into words. I love the beat and The chorus is really catchy and the parts with the screaming in the backing just makes the song even more immense.
This Love this hate 5/5
This is another sort of serious track. I love the chorus more than anything really off this track its just really catchy and you can tell it is sung with 110% effort. The lyrics can mean something if you want them to, they don't for me but I know someone who makes something of the lyrics.
Bottle And A Gun 4/5
The Beginning and the end are funny, The rest is sort of serious but sort of not at the same time, there isn't really much to say about this track. Its brilliant.
This track has a brilliant beginning you can hear the violins in the backgroung and the rhythm is totally awesome. The rapping is immense I really think these can be better than Eminem at the rapping if they put their mind to it. The beat to this track is catchy yet it is a typical beat that you get with your everyday gangsta rap...this band make it impressive though.
The beginning of this track puts me off a little but once it gets like 50 seconds in its all good and couldn't be any better. I love the bass line to this track. You can tell that there was a lot of thought put to these lyrics. You can also hear the piano melody if you listen carefully.
The Diary 5/5
A lot of swearing in this track but It is a deep track at that, a little more deep than their other ones. If you get the lyrics up you will understand what I mean. It has to be one of my favourite tracks another flawless beat.
A track I thought I wouldn't like to be honest, the name put me off at the beginning I mean 'Pimpin'' that's how gangsta's say it but when you listen to the track it all falls into place 'We ride with gangsta's and the pimpins' easy' makes it more understandable when you listen to it, but to understand fully you have to listen to the track itself.
Paradise Lost 5/5
A deep track with a great piano melody at the beginning and you can hear the violins in the background. One of the best tracks on the album, All the band members flaunt their talent to an unbelievable standard in this track.
Pain (Bonus Track) 4/5
This is a good track and is deffinatley worth the time.I love the lyrics J-Dog exceeds himself in this track as does The Producer. Again there is quite a bit of swearing so its best to listen to this track through headphones...I always find that headphones give you the real effect anyway.
Knife Called Lust (Bonus Track) 5/5
Brilliant track it really is, It's a very in depth track and the Rapping from Charlie Scene is excellent he really stretches it to make It....not over dramatic but to give it that edge.
The Loss (Bonus Track) 3/5
I think to me this is the only down fall of the album, this isn't the greatest track in the world but I have the strangest feeling this track is going to grow on me in time.
The Natives (Bonus Track) 5/5
A good way to end the album but there is only one problem...I want more, but being a new band it also makes you think, are they going to carry on with this career or is that it just a one album thing? This track is brilliant honestly if you want a taste of HU this is a track for you.
All in all this is a brilliant album. Im waiting for the band to come on tour by me so I can go and see if they are any good live =] I hope to god they are because I think these just might be becoming my favourite band.
Available from Amazon for £7.98 and let me tell you that it is DEFFINATLEY worth it if you like nu-metal
Disc #1 Tracklisting
2 Sell Your Soul
3 Everywhere I Go
4 No Other Place
5 No. 5
7 Black Dahlia
8 This Love, This Hate
9 Bottle And A Gun
12 The Diary
13 Pimpin' - Don Gilmore, Hollywood Undead, Deuce, Danny Lohner
14 Paradise Lost
15 Pain - Don Gilmore, Hollywood Undead, Deuce, Danny Lohner, Ben Grosse, Paul Pavao
16 Knife Called Lust - Deuce, Hollywood Undead