Release Date: 08.26.97
Record label: BMG/Wind Up
Genre(s): Movies, Film Scores, Musicals, Etc.
Heaven or Hell
by: trevor miller
My first experience with this CD was at the camp I worked at this summer. The guys in dorm would not stop playing it, and with most albums, this would become a problem for me after a couple of days. However, this was not the case with Creed. The more I listened to it, the more it sunk into my brain, until it was playing in there all by itself.
Lyrically, Tremonti and Stapp draw some pretty dark pictures. Over and over again the themes of judgement and guilt come up to haunt you, while driving beats and crunching guitars stomp the message into your ears. Songs like Unforgiven and the title track hold a ton of religious imagery, due mainly to the songwriters' upbringings. In My Own Prison, you get to taste the singer's dispair as he's basically being told to go to Hell, literally. The only encouraging song on the whole disc is the last, "One".
Musically, if you enjoy a constant wall of sound, crashing cymbals, decent grooves and a standard issue rock singer's case of gravel voice, this album is for you. Great bass lines allow the guitars to go all over the place and not sound like they're just trying to fill space. The drumming is pretty standard, even average in places, but it really shines in others, especially when you can tell that the producer has told him that "Less is more". The places where the songs slow down are extremely tight, where they could have gotten very sloppy very easily. The guitar work is pretty much what you would expect from the guy who wrote the songs. Tremonti plays these songs as if they were his children, the only thing is that they aren't terribly bright children. The solos are average at best, tired at worst. Generally, the guitars are the low point of the disc. The only exceptional pieces come when he puts the electric guitar and distortion aside and plays it clean or acoustic. Overall, an excellent first album, and I look forward to their next.