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 411mania » Music » Album Reviews

Soulidium - Children Of Chaos Review
Posted by Dan Marsicano on 08.08.2008

The Band

Michael McKnight-Vocals
AJ Maldonado-Guitar
Eric “Monsieur” Beausoleil-Guitar
Jake Jaden-Bass
Danny Cayocca-Drums

The Track Listing

1. Soulidification Sequence-.20
2. Trapped-3:41
3. The Light-3:58
4. Live Forever-3:49
5. Drama-3:46
6. About You-5:20
7. Easy Kind Of Girl-4:13
8. Waiting-3:24
9. Crucify-3:25
10. Jaded Messiah-4:00
11. The Big Time-3:22
12. Slowly We Die-3:26

The Review

For fans of Saw IV, you may recognize the band Soulidium, who contributed their single “Trapped” to the soundtrack. The hard rocking band was formed in 2005 by vocalist/songwriter Michael McKnight and released their debut album, Children Of Chaos, last year. The album flew under the radar and the band broke up, only to be reformed with McKnight and Cayocca being the only members to return. Children Of Chaos is only now getting any attention from the music press. The album is in the vein of modern hard rock with some industrial elements ala A Perfect Circle and Nine Inch Nails. Children Of Chaos is an album full of ups and downs, with some hard-hitting rockers and decent ballads.

Excluding the pointless intro, McKnight and company has composed eleven tracks dripping with atmosphere and darkness. The band doesn’t flirt with much experimentation, only expanding their sound with a strings section on a few tracks. What you have here is one hard-hitting track after another, held together by McKnight’s soaring vocals and Maldonato and Beausoleil sense of melody.

“Trapped” and “The Light” are solid openers, displaying what the next 40 minutes holds for the listener. Both tracks have an Adema feel to them, pounding you with heavy riffing, yet soothing you with a clean electric guitar melody here and there. McKnight shows off his vocal range with “Drama,” utilizing harsh vocals to mixed results. It just sounds unnatural for him, like when Hoobastank vocalist Doug Robb got all “angry” on us on “Out Of Control.”

The middle three tracks take the album for a softer ride, as McKnight puts on his emotional cap and the strings come in full force to provide that extra touch to the songs. The band pulls these tracks off well, but I question having three of them consecutively, as it breaks the flow of the album quite a bit. I’ve never been a fan of rock bands putting melodic tracks back to back, unless there is a radical difference between them, and Soulidium is no different.

Children Of Chaos saves the best for last with the most aggressive tracks sandwiched at the end. “Crucify” and “The Big Time” have a slower Metallica vibe to them, especially in the latter track, which contains the only lead guitar section of the entire album. “Slowly We Die” ends the album with an aggressive, uptempo track, sounding like it was taken out of the B-side of Chevelle’s Wonder What’s Next.

The album is stacked with talented musicians, but none of them really stand out. Singer Michael McKnight is the only member of the band that gives a memorable performance. His vocals can be rough, soothing, and passionate, all in the same track. The only negative is when he experiments with “harsh” vocals on “Drama,” which sounds out of place looking at the rest of the album as a whole.

Children Of Chaos is a decent debut album, showing a potential for the future. The big question is, with three of the five members leaving, how will the music sound in later releases? While McKnight is the principle songwriter, losing half your band can have a profound impact on the structure of the music. Children Of Chaos has been out for a year, but if you have some extra cash on you, and are looking for a hard rock album that industrial-tinged, Children Of Chaos should satisfy your craving.

The 411Children Of Chaos is a debut album that has the basis for something great in the future. With half the band gone, it will definitely be interesting to see what direction the band goes in on their sophomore album. If you are looking for a solid plate of hard rock, Children Of Chaos will please you. Don't expect anything revolutionary though.
Final Score:  6.5   [ Average ]  legend


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