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The Years of Spiritual Dissent

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Album Review

After being dropped by Earache, Society 1 re-emerged on Crash Music — and the first thing that Crash released by the Los Angeles band was The Years of Spiritual Dissent, which is dominated by previously released material even though it isn't really a best-of. Crash marketed this two-disc package (an audio CD and a bonus DVD) as a "precursor" to Sadist Messiah, an album of new songs that was given an early 2007 release date. Most of The Years of Spiritual Dissent's audio CD is devoted to recordings from the two albums that Society provided in their pre-Earache days (Slacker Jesus, their debut album of 1999, and the follow-up Words as Carriers, released by bandleader Matt Zane), and that material ranges from industrialized alternative metal to spoken word. It's an unusual combination (how many alt-metal bands are into spoken word?), but Zane's spoken word performances are darkly intriguing (if somewhat self-indulgent). The metal offerings are generally solid and infectious alternative metal/industrial metal tracks such as "Thinking Is the Link," "Let's Do It," and "Look at Your Life," underscoring Zane's fondness for White Zombie, Godflesh, and Ministry. Those influences are equally evident on the new tracks, which include the bludgeoning "This Is the End" and an inspired cover of Alice Cooper's "Sick Things." Meanwhile, the bonus DVD's main attraction is an in-depth interview with Zane and his colleagues; Zane speaks candidly about Society's colorful history as well as his years in the porn industry (before he gave up porn to concentrate on music full-time, Zane was a successful porn director). Taken as a whole, The Years of Spiritual Dissent is slightly uneven. But all things considered, it paints an attractive picture of Society 1's contributions to alternative metal and industrial metal.

Customer Reviews


Killer drummer on Slacker Jesus.Good remake of Sabbaths "Who are You".This early stuff has a much better groove and feel to it than the newer stuff.

The Years of Spiritual Dissent, Society 1
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