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Seether - 'Holding Onto Strings Better Left To Fray' Hot

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Written by Central Electronic Brain     December 12, 2011    
 
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A great addition to an already fine list of releases.

The unusually titled album is Seether's fourth studio outing and without doubt their most commercial release so far. It seems such a long time since 'Finding Beauty In Negative Spaces' in 2007: a CD that saw the initial steps towards a more mainstream sound, without losing their identity. So, maybe, band leader Shaun Morgan is mellowing as the years pass by? This time around the songs seem less of a social attack and more of an outlet for Morgan's keener insights into personal relationships and life's fundamental intricacies.

'Fur Cue' is a hard-hitting opener, along with 'No Resolution' and 'Desire For Need' the most identifiable connections to Seether's musical past. Featuring some trademark vocal angst (but not overdone) and a combination of lyrical aggression and noteworthy harmonies, for the most part it lays down a foundation upon which the rest of the album is built in terms of style and approach. 'Country Song' has been available on YouTube for quite a while now and provides something of an insight into the Seether sense of humour. The countrified intro I am sure would have set many of the band's fans hearts a fluttering, but once the song kicks in proper we are in familiar territory (amusing promo video by the way). Personal favourites after countless spins have to be 'Here and Now' and 'Tonight'.

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Very commercially arranged and instantly memorable, both tracks wouldn't be out of place on many radio stations playlists. The fact that songs of this nature and calibre can nestle seamlessly alongside those of a more incendiary character is testament to good writing skills and feeling for appealing song structures. 'Pass Slowly' drips with emotion and highlights Morgan's overlooked abilities as a singer as well as a writer. Enhanced by strings and complimented by a great band performance it would surprise many of the readers of this magazine who identify the name Seether with the dark side of the musical spectrum. Throughout the album the Pearl Jam references are still in evidence but Seether's own identity has been cemented for too long to let the grandfathers of grunge's influence become overbearing. 

The copy I possess is the deluxe edition and worth tracking down for a couple of extra quid. The four additional songs are excellent and the bonus DVD contains a studio report filmed during the making of 'HOSBLTF' as well as the promo videos for 'Country Song', 'Pass Slowly' and 'Fur Cue'.

A great addition to an already fine list of releases and I'd be such a happy bunny if there was a tour to follow. Finally, a word of caution for those of a sensitive disposition......there is a little bit of swearing!

Dave Bott

 

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