Review: Audioslave - Out of Exile

Every once in a while a band comes along that really changes the way you perceive music, for me one of these bands was Rage Against the Machine. I'll be the first to admit that I, like most angsty teenagers was lured into Rage's music by their anti-authoritarian songs, and honestly dude, they said "fuck" a whole lot. Not only did the vulgar language lure me in but instead of writing about girls and cars, they took the time to write music about something that actually mattered, politics. Gimmick or not, the music was compelling. Soon after I first heard Bulls on Parade on the radio I started to really question why I was listening to a lot of the other music that interested me at the time. Slowly I began to drift away from happy songs about love and sunshine, and turned to songs that really had a purpose. That being said, I was very excited when I first heard that one of my favorite bands of all time was going to reform, and motherfucking Chris Cornell is going to be their singer. It was like some sort of early-90s rock wet dream. Soundgarden and Rage against the Machine coming together to form a band that would revolutionize rock! Or so they all said.

Fast forward to today; Audioslave has released Out of Exile the follow-up to their self-titled debut released in 2002. Rock doesn't seem to have been revolutionized; in fact it seems almost exactly the same. Just as with their self-titled released, the band has crammed in as many publicity stunts as possible, playing on the streets of LA; resulting in a riot, and an even larger stunt in Cuba in front of 50,000 fans at Havana's Anti-Imperialist plaza. Brilliant marketing, but does their album measure up to the amount of hype the band has surrounding them at all times? After all they are a supergroup consisting of 2 of the most successful rock bands in history. The answer to this is an unenthusiastic 'No."

Out of Exile opens in stereotypical Tom Morello fashion with a gimmicky guitar line dropping in to a tired riff; strikingly similar to Cochise. While the album isn't really terribly offensive, it just lacks the presence and power of any of the Soundgarden or Rage against the Machine releases, chalk it up to nostalgia or whatever you want, but this album simply does not deliver the caliber of music that we all know these musicians are capable of creating. Every song is written using the same pop-rock formula and Morello's gimmicky solos simply do not work in conjunction with Chris Cornell's dark vocals.

The album moves through a dozen songs that all follow the same basic formula; the album does 'rock' at a few occasions, but the tone and attitude just seems to have been completely lost. It seems like the band is just going through the motions and then moving on. A few of the songs have a very strong Soundgarden feel to them, while others seem to be some sort of Led Zeppelin effects laden tribute, the album's seventh track The Worm especially.

The bands first release consisted mainly of Rage against the Machine leftovers, but the few songs where the band actually let themselves go, namely The Last Remaining Light and Shadow on the Sun, were extravagant and exciting. I got this album hoping that this type of writing would dominate the album; sadly this is just simply not the case. The only track that I can recommend to anyone is the title track, and the only reason I recommend it is because it is written like a self-titled Rage against the Machine era nostalgia track. I guess that's basically what the band has decided to sink to, a tribute to what they used to be.

Sadly this album will probably soar up the rock charts and make the band millions of dollars, in some ways you have to respect the band for being able to make money by re-writing the same songs they have been writing since 1991, but it'd be nice to see some sort of growth. Turning to pop-rock; U2 style, may be growth, but the majority of the bands core fans will think it's moving in the wrong direction.

Overall: 3.9/10

Chris Elkjar is the founder of 'trust.me' an online music magazine for the enthusiast. He spends all of his spare time immersed in music, be it writing reviews, interviews with leading bands or writing his own music.

For more of his writing, check out Trust-Me.ca - Music for robots

In The News:

Music, Music, Everywhere! | A+E  North Coast Journal
Luca soundtrack: Explore the songs and music of Disney-Pixar film  HITC - Football, Gaming, Movies, TV, Music
Music Education majors, graduates on Grammy short list  Office of Communications and Marketing
Music Week  Music Week
V's New Music Round-Up  vmagazine.com
Rock Music Menu: Apple Music celebrates Juneteenth  The Delaware County Daily Times
Anne Wilson debuts on top with new music  Niagara Frontier Publications

Fiddle Tab Makes Learning Fiddle Fast and Easy

Learning fiddle tab is so intuitive and so easy that... Read More

Is Your Child Struggling in School? Get Him (Or Her) Music Lessons

This is counterintuitive, I know. Our natural response to seeing... Read More

Learning the Piano and Playing the Piano

Many piano students spend much time learning how to play... Read More

Pakistani Pop Music

Pakistan is blessed with talent and when we talk about... Read More

CD Review: Amber - My Kind of World

Pop/Rock Recording Artist Amber, who has scored seven #1 Billboard... Read More

Music Business Contacts: Music Business Registry connects artists, managers, publishers, producers &

"The difference between success and failure is information," notes Ritch... Read More

Musical Improvisation Basics - Four Strategies For Playing Wrong Notes

While it probably doesn't seem like this would help -... Read More

Tips on Performing Your Music for Others

Have you ever dreamed of performing a piece you created... Read More

Taking iPod Culture into Clubs as Well as Cyberspace: Jonny Rocket Interviewed by The G-Man

Already making plenty of noise in the marketplace is a... Read More

The Music Industry and Its Lack of Talent

So it has come to this... what we see overrides... Read More

Discover The Perfect Place To Perform

Once you know what your Unique Selling Proposition is as... Read More

The Irish Harp

The harp that once through Tara's halls the soul of... Read More

Choosing a Jazz Band for Your Party

In many years of arranging jazz bands for all sorts... Read More

Legend Vega Releasing New Pop CD

Legend Vega is scheduled to release her newest CD this... Read More

Rabbitt Productions - Up & Coming Atlanta Producer

When you think of music in Atlanta you generally think... Read More

History of the Clarinet From the 19th Century

While composers had already begun to write music for the... Read More

Formation of a Song (Recording)

As industry insiders, we sometimes forget that when discussing the... Read More

The Flower Garden and New Age Piano Music

If you've ever looked at a flower garden, not only... Read More

Performing, Whats the Big Deal?

Performance anxiety is not something that only happens to musicians,... Read More

Born to sing, Britney Spears is as big as ever today

Britney Spears was born December 2 1981 as Britney Jean... Read More

Anglican Arrogance: Small-Minded Choirmembers

What is "Episcopal" music?We often hear people express concern about... Read More

How to Create Hip, Mature, and Lush Harmonies [correction]

Rarely is a chord played with its tones contained in... Read More

Learn to Play the Piano

Rocket Piano is a very professionally done piano lesson package.... Read More

Improvising On The Piano: Jazz Musicians Do It -- Why Not Other Styles?

Why jazz piano improvisation?Why not gospel piano improvisation?Is it not... Read More

Mp3s ? The Future of Music?

Mp3 music is audio that has been digitally encoded and... Read More