This is an album I have been looking forward to since their live album release hit the stores. Chevelle is a Chicago based band. I have been listening to them since their first release, “Point #1”. My fondness was cemented the day I read they named the band for their dad’s favorite automobile. I am also a Chevy fan. Chevelle was first introduced to the market under Squint Entertainment, a Christian record label which created quite a controversy for them. They may have finally moved beyond the label of Christian band to a band who is serious about their faith. I am not sure what that means specifically but on to the album review. A couple of aspects of the band that attracted me to Chevelle are; they write their own music, and they are a three piece band. They have been compared to other bands like Tool, and Helmet, but I got into Chevelle long before I heard any music from those other bands. In my estimation there is only a slight resemblance in sound and style. Some music critics have described Chevelle in such terms as “a kind of controlled chaos, a beautiful darkness, a gentle rampage of aural velocity”. I will agree with that description. In my own experience of listening to their music and seeing them live I would describe their music as melodic restrained chaos. This pattern holds in their latest project titled “Hats Off To The Bull“.
The album begins with “Face To The Floor”. A heavy melodic groove that starts the Chevelle motor just fine. This track was first leaked to radio back in September of this year and is getting some nice airplay on rock and college radio stations. In an interview earlier this year, drummer Sam Loeffler, stated that the song is about the Ponzi scheme stuff going on in some corporations today. Next up is “Same Old Trip”. The song is typical Chevelle and yet not with some cool backing vocals mixed in during the chorus. “Ruse” is up next, and it reminds me of some of the pieces from their “Wonder What’s Next” album, one of my favorite Chevelle albums. The “Meddler” has many layers to it. It has some very cool guitar vibrato which makes the song almost atmospheric. “Pinata” is a quick paced song reminiscent of “Mia” from their “Point #1” album, and yet contains an almost clean rock sound mixed in, and some rare lead guitar work.