October 1998

Static 13 - Fear is Your Friend
Released: 1998

by Steven Rochlin

Musical Performance ****1/2
Recording Quality ****
Overall Enjoyment *****

[Reviewed on CD]Here's a band I've been following since, well, their beginning. Why, you ask? Well, it's because these guys kick axe! They're kinda like Metallica (before they virtually sold out from the album Load onward) and Queensryche with a few very small hints of Rush. If you remember my review of their first album, eye won’t fool i, in SoundStage!'s December 1997 issue, they only got an average score for sound quality. The rest was kickin' though. Well, this new album has all the slammatocious nasty new jams plus killer sound quality too! (Said in humor.) Great taste, less filling!

The first song, "Scream," starts out with a standard four-beat riff, though within a few measures breaks into this head-bangin' thrash. Not the heaviest thrash like Rage Against the Machine, though thrashing nevertheless. The next song is their version of that old rocker fave "Magic Carpet Ride," which is then followed by one of my favorite tunes of theirs, "Raindrops of Love." This is a mellow tune (and you felt I leaned more towards being a thrash-head techno-rager).

"Raindrops of Love" starts out all laid-back, with congas, mellow guitar, and vocals. It's really more a flowing song driven by Static 13's lead vocalist Ari David. Ya know, the Internet is great in that instead of me finishing the review of this sing, you can actually hear the music for yourself. Let's see the jealous print-only reviewers do this!

Another great tune on this album is "Still Born Sunrise." Avoiding all the possible political incorrectness about the title alone (and since when has being politically correct mattered with music?), this is that slow-motion slam that makes me wanna thrash the place! It has a driving back beat as the vocals stab through to my very soul. It all ends with an exalted screamin' guitar. Maybe you just gotta hear this song, though no amount of words will really do it justice. Listen and be enlightened.

There are a total of 11 songs here, and the title of the CD alone should give you a hint of what you are in for. Rage Against the Machine says, "Fear is your only God," yet with Static 13 Fear Is Your Friend. If any of you audiophiles have any guts and love Xtreme fun and music like me, this album is for you. Then again my significant other who says "I love folk music and stuff like Greg Brown" even now enjoys Static 13 after hearing this album and also seeing them perform live. Now if this isn't proof how good these dudes are, I dunno what more to say. Feel free to send me your comments on this album. Haven't we all had enough of audiophile lounge-lizard chick-singer-and-piano music? Sheeesh, wake up and smell the glove! No, you won’t find these guys on heavy MTV rotation cuz they refuse to sell out. Maybe they're a bit ahead of their time. Of course, these guys have been on college radio for a while, where real music can be found. Static 13 can kick the Spice Girls butts with all hands tied behind their backs! Humbly and highly recommended. I'm outta here.