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The Episodes

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Album Review

After the back-to-basics Plead the Fifth, Taproot once again get serious on The Episodes, an ambitious concept album that finds them reconnecting with their prog side without quite abandoning the churning nu-metal that brought them to the attention of Fred Durst at the beginning of their career. Despite those remnants of heavy fifth harmonies in the voices and guitars, The Episodes is certainly a record that flaunts its self-stylized complexities, frequently drifting into extended instrumental interludes, taking its time as it cascades from quiet to loud, often finding space for ominous recitals from a Speak & Spell. While the latter feels like a tired gimmick, on the whole The Episodes is refreshing when compared to the head-down rock of Plead the Fifth. Perhaps The Episodes never relates a coherent story line — it's impossible to tell what the story is without too close of a listen — the album nevertheless gels musically and it's one of the band's better efforts.

Biography

Formed: 1997 in Ann Arbor, MI

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Ann Arbor, MI's own Taproot sent their demo to Limp Bizkit's frontman/business entrepreneur Fred Durst in 1998, not ever thinking Durst would call them back personally. To the band's surprise, Durst replied, promising the alt-punk metal quartet the world. But Durst apparently took too long to deliver the goods, for Taproot — whose lineup comprised frontman Stephen Richards, guitarist Michael DeWolf, bassist Philip Lipscomb, and drummer Jarrod Montague — landed a deal with Atlantic Records...
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The Episodes, Taproot
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