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Protest The Hero - "Scurrilous" (CD)

Protest The Hero - "Scurrilous" CD cover image

"Scurrilous" track listing:

1. C’est La Vie
2. Hair-Trigger
3. Tandem
4. Moonlight
5. Tapestry
6. Dunsel
7. The Reign of Unending Terror
8. Termites
9. Tongue-Splitter
10. Sex Tapes

Reviewed by on March 12, 2011

"There is nothing really new about the material found on 'Scurrilous,' but with a band as unique as Protest the Hero that is actually a redeeming quality and as the saying goes; 'If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.'"

Protest the Hero is certainly a band that has, with its fourth album, carved out its own niche in the progressive metal world. With a sound to completely call its own, Protest the Hero turned heads with its previous full length, “Fortress,” and became an act known world-wide for its extremely technical and equally melodic musicianship. On its third full length release, “Scurrilous,” the band has cemented itself in the tech-melody mindset and has delivered an album that will finally convince the few that are still on the fence that Protest the Hero is easily one of the top progressive metal bands going today.

There is nothing really new about the material found on “Scurrilous,” but with a band as unique as Protest the Hero that is actually a redeeming quality and as the saying goes; “If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.” The ten tracks that comprise “Scurrilous” are as equally technically as anything the band has ever done, but what makes the new record so special is the added attention to the quality of the vocals. Front man Rody Walker has finally peaked, reaching a plateau that countless vocalists only dream of achieving. From the opening cut, “C’est La Vie,” Walker uses his godly vocal range to his full ability – providing an incredible start to a fantastic album.

While “Fortress” seemed to focus more on the technical aspect of the band’s sound, “Scurrilous” on the other hand is an album that makes sure the melodies are just as important as the technicality. There really isn’t a high point on the album, but there isn’t a low point either. From the enchanting “Tandem” to the near Between the Buried and Me-like “Dunsel,” the album presents a fantastic listen from start to finish. Existing fans will be very much pleased with the end product and new fans are certainly jumping on the bandwagon.

To be fair, “Scurrilous” isn’t exactly a complete step up from the band and not nearly enough was added to the sound to make it a new experience, but the ten tracks featured here are some of the strongest in the band’s career and it sees Protest The Hero continuing on its path to progressive metal dominance.

Highs: More focused and melodic songwriting, while maintaining the technical edge of past albums.

Lows: Not alot has changed and it may seem repetitive to some.

Bottom line: Fans of extremely technical and melodic metal will enjoy everything "Scurrilous" has to offer.

Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls
3.5 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)