"Organism" (Self-produced)

Reviewed by Jason Savage

Unsound was formed in Greenville, N.C., by guitarist Todd Paddock and bassist Charles "Cheech" Massey in 1991. After adding Todd Houck and Trey Willits, they relocated to Raleigh in 1998. Since then, they have battled in the trenches of the local scene, opening for nationals such as Anthrax, Sevendust, Filter, Earshot, Mushroomhead, Audiovent, Nonpoint, DragPipe, Gravity Kills, Reveille, Dry Cell, Dasmad and Dog Fashion Disco.

I thought I'd do something a little different than my normal protocol and break this CD down track by track:

"From All Sides:
This song rocks! Vocal harmonies remind me of Alice in Chains and Todd sounds a little like Rob Traynor from Dust to Dust on his cleans. 

"Shed Away"
I like the guitars on the intro. They have a worldly sound, sort of Middle Eastern, which I really dig. In fact, they do a great job mixing in these with the heavier guitars that kick in. Killer headbanging groove and cool tribalistic drumming. Very thick bass . . . they came off distorted in parts when I jammed this in the car. They aren't as overbearing on the computer player. Not a bad thing though. It gave it a concert feel.

I like how the mellow vocals set the mood and build up to the chorus. Kinda Saigon Kick-ish if you know what I mean. If you're a SK fan, you can catch the subtle feel of it I'm getting here. I really liked the guitar solo. It has an old school feel but I can't put my finger on it. This is definitely a radio hit! 

"The Ugly Thing I Am"
Cool tune. I found myself windmilling my head. Now only if my damn hair would grow back quicker! I'm still feeling that Saigon Kick thing in his cleans. 

The barked vocals here remind me of Machinehead. I like how the drums speed up. The song seems to change pace a few times, which definitely sounded good. 

It opens with a cool intro that builds up into a heavier vocal foray. This shit flows well and is very addicting! I can definitely see the pit-starting possibilities. I'm really digging the Spanish style guitar solo that lead into some truly haunting vocals before getting my ass kicked again with heaviness. This song is fucking brilliant! It combines so many different styles but they pull it off beautifully! The new wave meets industrial outro is cool too.

The intro is a little long here and has the potential to lose the listener, but awesome nonetheless. It has almost a jazzy feel to it as it melds into guitar virtuosity territory. Then it kicks into the Metallica riff and back down again. I really like the vocals on this tune too!

Overall, these guys kicked my ass! They have a lot of interesting time changes and successfully blend several styles but still manage to sound fresh and original. The clean vocals were very haunting at times and although I am reminded of someone else, Todd's style is still all his own.

Unsound: Todd Paddock- guitar, Charles "Cheech" Massey- bass, Todd Houck- vocals/guitar, Trey Willits- drums.

For more information, check out http://www.unsound.ws.

Rating Guide:

  A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2004 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 04 Sep 2023 15:33:15 -0400.