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Stone Sour [CD & DVD] ()

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While Stone Sour was formed as an avenue from which Slipknot vocalist Corey Taylor and guitarist Jim Root could unleash their vision without upsetting the legions of Slipknot followers, it is, in fact, a much more impressive statement than many bands of its ilk. Those who heard "Wait and Bleed" during its radio days should be well aware that Taylor has the ability to actually sing, and on this release he does, bringing forth noticeable influences from Alice in Chains and Soundgarden. Surprisingly, Taylor is quite adept at this vocal platform, and sings with conviction, while Root plays guitar as only he can, with determined intensity. While the lyrical content shares a myriad of similarities with Slipknot, Taylor comes across as much less infuriated, and this allows the songs themselves to settle smoothly, yet motivate the listener to feel the emotion being squeezed out. Many should be familiar with "Bother," which first was found on the Spider-Man soundtrack in the spring of 2002, but the songs that stand out the most are tracks like "Orchids" and "Take a Number," which strike with surprising force for an alternative rock group. The most remarkable aspect of Stone Sour's self-titled debut is how the album grows on the listener with repeat plays. Where most hard rock albums wane after too many listens, Stone Sour instead gains strength, making this an excellent album, and a much more accomplished effort, than Slipknot drummer Joey Jordison's Murderdolls plaything. [The new version contains five un-released tracks, and features a three-song bonus DVD.] ~ Jason D. Taylor, Rovi Hide synopsis

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