By Alexander Stigz Castiglione
Allow me to preface this review by saying that for the most part, in past years, the Saw soundtracks (1-6) have been pretty brutal, with bands like Suicide Silence, Hatebreed, and the like gracing their tracklisting. However, Saw 3D’s soundtrack is more easy listening than metal when compared to other releases. Don’t get me wrong, some of the songs are good, and I hate very few, but if you have any of the horror franchise’s CD’s, this one will come up wanting.
So, in that same vein, this review will be a track by track take on the songs on the 16 track album, rather than giving it a broad review.
Saving Abel – “Never” – This song, like most of them on the album, isn’t “bad,” but it’s completely out of context with previous albums inspired by the horror movies. Frankly, I don’t know much about Saving Abel, but it seems to me like this is a mixture of Chevelle and StoneSour influences, with some pretty dope breakdowns. Like many of the songs, I don’t love it, I don’t hate it.
Dead by Sunrise – “Condemned” – This song is a complete ripoff of a bunch of bands that I can’t even put my finger on. The vocals are growling with no punch, guitar work is boring and the lyrics are more comprised of verses that rhyme than verses that make sense. This one I do not like, as it is lacking completely and utterly in originality. Back to the drawing board, guys.
Hinder – “Waking Up The Devil” – Yes, it’s Hinder on a soundtrack. Although they are nowhere near metal, this track I actually enjoy. Austin, the vocalist, has some serious pipes that are like a mix between early Steven Tyler with more bite to it. Lyrically, it’s pretty well assembled, and the overall composition is relatively tight. Again, I don’t love it but I don’t hate it, however, like many of the jams on this record, it’s perfect for driving or having on in the background while you do something else.
Karnivool – “Goliath” – From the first few notes, you can tell this has elements like that of Tool and A Perfect Circle. Then you get to the vocals and it is completely obvious it’s either an homage or a ripoff to the previously mentioned bands. Personally I like the down tempo grind of the track and the lingering vocals. If you like Tool, you’ll love this track.
Nitzer Ebb – “Promises” – The words Epic Fail come into mind when I hear this track. Like so many of these indie-electronica punks coming out, this track is horrendous. It’s like they found a Moog in storage and layer it over their weak vocals and boring guitar work. It seems like they’re trying to do something like The Faint, but missed the target completely. Way to go guys, I never heard of you and now I know why.
Kopek – “Love is Dead” – Like an angry version of The White Stripes, this track has a minimal charm to its composition that makes it pretty dope and listener friendly. I can barely understand the vocalist but it makes me want to drive, run, or otherwise do something with myself. Not the best on the album but not the worst, and it has elements of a lot of acts laced together to make something unique.
Saliva – “Badass” – Seriously guys, give it up. You haven’t been heard of since the days of the first Fast & the Furious and for good reason, you guys suck. And stop with the one name titles like “Badass” and “Superstar.” We get it, you aren’t good at making titles. Like all of their songs, they’re talking about how good they are and how bad their opponent is. If I was in High School 10 years ago I might listen to this before a big game or something (and I emphasize might), but like I said, the ship has sailed and you aren’t putting out good music. Just stop. Please.
My Darkest Days – “The World Belongs to Me” – One of the lighter tracks on the album and upon first listening to it, I said “pfft…weak.” Listening to it as I write this review, it does have some good elements: it’s well produced, lyrically superior to other tracks on the album and pretty damn catchy. Although it’s more Dashboard Confessional and less Suicide Silence, I still like the track. I don’t know why but I do; it has elements of Chevelle, Seether, and downtempo Thrice (think Vheissu).
Default – “Turn It On” – Some southern influenced rock to get your alcoholic on. Nothing spectacular but something you would hear on the radio (whether that’s good or bad you decide).
I-Exist – “Firefly” – Like most of the songs, something I’d leave on and just do some work around the house – however, they seem to cross genres too much: they go from a power-metal electronic synth breakdown to the post hardcore screamo break in, which leaves something to be desired. That and the lyrics make no sense. Just saying.
Boom Boom Satelites – “What Goes Around Comes Around” – See Nitzer Ebb – Just like that track, this indie-electronica rock garbage does not belong on a horror movie soundtrack. It’s like the bastard love child of Cobra Starship, Metro Station, and garage band. Congratulation, you suck. Thanks for playing, now put on some guy-liner.
Adelitas Way – “Scream” – One of the ballsiest songs on the album (although on this album that’s like being the smartest kid in the special class), however, it’s catchy with Trust Company meets Jamey Jasta-esque vocals. Pretty solid intro, awesome guitar solos, nice groove and no vast swings in tempo or genre like other songs on the record. Overall, one of the best on the album.
Krokus – “Hoodoo Woman” – Hair metal died in the 80’s, thank god. But somehow, it’s back on Saw 3D with these dopes and their AC/DC wannabe vocalist. I’ll pass.
Lordi – “This Is Heavy Metal” – Finally, a song with some balls. I don’t even think I need to justify this – Although it does taste of Kiss in a way, which I dislike.
Wagdug Futuristic Unity – “Ram The Crush” – Heaviest song on the album – BY FAR, and what the entire thing should’ve sounded like. I can feel the elbow in the side of my head from the pit. This track takes the win. (Even though I have no idea what the band name means)
Dir En Grey – “Hageshisha To, Kono Mune No Naka De Karamitsuita Shakunetsu No Yami”– Post hardcore at it’s finest (at least for this album) with Mars Volta, Gojira and even some Lamb of God elements. Solid, if you ask me, but I’m a little jaded because I added this to rotation at my college station.
Tracks that rock (for the most part) : Wagdug Futuristic Unity – “Ram The Crush” / Dir En Grey – “Hageshisha To, Kono Mune No Naka De Karamitsuita Shakunetsu No Yami” / Hinder – “Waking Up The Devil” / Adelitas Way – “Scream”
Tracks that blow goats : Boom Boom Satelites – “What Goes Around Comes Around” / Nitzer Ebb – “Promises” / Saliva – “Badass”
Overall, the soundtrack is listenable. Something you put on in the background while you do more important things, and for this album, I’d say doing my taxes and getting a colonoscopy from a blind Chinese acupuncturist would be something I’d rather do. 60% of it sucks, 30% is tolerable, and 10% is actually good. If you bought it already I feel bad for you. This is not in the same vein as any of their other soundtrack – it lacks balls, heaviness and good bands. Whoever contracted these chumps – find a bottle of aspirin and take lots with alcohol.
Stigz Rating: 2/10