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Similarly Requested CDs
Underrated Classic From An Underappreciated Band
Joel Israel | Cedar City, UT United States | 02/05/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Voivod's unique and strange brand of science-fiction-tinged progressive rock/metal has never really clicked with the mainstream. Their willingness to experiment, rather bizarre lyrical tendencies, and a hybrid sound drawing from disparate styles and genres of music have all been a hindrance to their acceptance, but I think most Voivod fans, myself included, wouldn't have it any other way. Despite all that, some of their albums are quite catchy, and would certainly appeal to a wider audience; "Angel Rat" is certainly proof of that.
Full of catchy, pop-inflected vocals, driving rock guitar, and melodic bass lines, this album is the sort of music the casual lister would enjoy, but closer scrutiny from fans of prog will reveal intricate and unorthodox song structures, creative and artistic use of effects, clever chord voicings and experimental textures, and surreal, twilight-zone lyrical content. An amazing and approachable album which has lost none of it's appeal over the years for me; this is the best place for someone who has never heard Voivod to start...not as avant-garde or heavy as "Dimension Hatross", which is usually considered Voivod's "best" album, but the beginning of their flirtation with a more accessible yet experimental prog-rock style for a band who constantly reinvents themselves. An obscure triumph. This band has always been ahead of their time..."
"Why do I dream of kites?"
Church of The Flaming Sword | 01/10/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Is this the same Voivod that released War and Pain back in 1984?
I guess that depends on who you ask. Since they are a band that never releases the same album twice, you are going to hear different answers. As for myself, I love everything they have put out so far - even Negatron and Phobos from the controversial Eric Forrest era.
Angel Rat from 1991 is one of their more polarizing efforts. Mainly because it is not as heavy or as complex as their earlier albums. Actually, they began to soften up the guitars a little on Nothingface, which is still a phenomenal album. Snake also came a long way as a vocalist from his abrasive throat-destroying beginnings to a distinctive, if not slightly nasally, singer. Those reasons may have lead to people crying "sell out" needlessly.
Since this is a softer, simpler, and more accessible Voivod, it should be ignored?
Yes this is an album that only contains songs that do not stray from the traditional verse-chorus-verse-chorus structure. Still, it is a very progressive work that was wrongly bashed by metal critics who expect bands to make heavier and heavier albums at the expense of songwriting. This is not Voivod-lite as they would have you believe. Instead, this is a fine album by a band that believes in challenging themselves regardless of what others think.
If you are just checking out this magnificent band, and Angel Rat is the first album by them you come across. Do not pass it up. Ignore the neanderthal critics and listen for yourself. I'm glad I did."
Funhouse, carousel, cotton candy...
Steven J. Schultz | Nowhere of consequence | 01/27/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Not three words you commonly associate with heavy metal. But then Voivod is no common metal band.
This record and its follow-up "The Outer Limits" had little or nothing to do with the two previous bizarre gems "Nothingface" and "Dimension Hatross". But the four together document an amazing transformation by an amazing band.
"Angel Rat" by itself is a wonderful little post-psychedelic rock masterpiece. At the time of release, it was woefully ignored by fans and press alike, expecting "Dimension Nothingface" I imagine. The songs are fairly simple and straight-forward in style and structure, though anything but ordinary at heart. Supposedly based on Russian myths and fairy tales, the tracks are bright, uplifting, hopeful, even at their weirdest moments.
This album came out at almost the same time as Smashing Pumpkins' "Gish". And it deserved to have attained that level of popularity. In fact, if you liked "Gish", it'll be worth your time to check out "Angel Rat"."