Filter — The Amalgamut

Reviewed by simple

If you ask our favorite Cornerstone girl Dani, she will be the first to acknowledge that I have been stalling on this review. I have always been a big Filter fan and I was really disappointed when I heard The Amalgamut. In fact, I was so disappointed that I dreaded reviewing it because I didn't want to have to trash the band. However, some things must be done. Better to give my opinion then to just ignore it I suppose.

My main problems with Tthe Amalgamut lie in the chorus of various songs. For instance, in "American Cliché", the song starts out with a lot of potential and has the makings of a great Filter track, however once the chorus kicks in it just ruins the song. It isn't really that the chorus is bad, it is just that they all are so repetitive that it seems like old Ritchie Patrick just ran out of ideas. Sure the words are different, but the delivery of the vocals and the pace of the chorus all seem the same. By track 3 your are already looking to hear something different, and what you get is the first single, "Where Do We Go From Here", which is basically "Take a Picture" round 2. The clear exception to my previous comments is the track "So I Quit". This track is balls to the wall rockin and a nice change of pace, but guess what follows...another slow boring song.

I guess I need to be clear that it's not that I think The Amalgamut is a bad album, it is just not that good. The lyrics of the album are clearly a reflection of how Richard Patrick has felt after September 11th, and in that regard it is really great to hear something with such positive lyrics and hopeful wishes for the future. However, it makes me think that maybe he was so wrapped up in these lyrics and really expressing how he was feeling that he forgot to spend a little extra time on the structure of the songs themselves. The result is a really heart felt and what feels like a very introspective album, full of borrowing songs.

There are two ways to look at this album. One is to say that Filter just doesn't have it in them anymore and have run out of ideas for songs. I don't like that way of looking at it. I believe that The Amalgamut is what Richard Patrick needed to make to deal with the world when he was recording the album, and that next time around we will get something with a little more edge to it. Only time will tell.

Sep 18 2002