Review: SOiL ‘Whole’

SOiL has been a perennial part of the Metal fabric since their Chicago formation back in 1997. Through the years and line-up changes that have followed, they have consistently put out material that has enjoyed both independent and mainstream success. Reunited with original frontman Ryan McCombs, they have gone back to the roots from which they sprung, becoming “whole” once again.

The album opener ‘Loaded Gun’ fires with all the intensity of its namesake – thickly distorted, chugging riffs and precise, breakneck leads – announcing their return in true SOiL fashion, leaving no room for doubt, only adrenaline-fueled, mosh-worthy mayhem.

‘The Hate Song’ has all the resentful, angst-ridden lamentations of the truly scorned, it’s the classic love/hate archetype set against heavy distortion, thundering drums, and the vocal power and prowess of McCombs. Whether you love to hate it or hate to love it, this track is sure to awaken the spiteful headbanger in us all.

‘Whole’ remains deeply rooted in powerful riffs throughout, providing the ideal platform for McCombs’ vocals to bleed through in all their guttural, gritty glory. It’s an all-out Rock record, through and through. If you are looking for diversity, you won’t find it here (and sometimes that can be a good thing). ‘Whole’ isn’t about fancy string or piano arrangements, it’s about putting your devil horns up and your head down as you charge into the belly of the beast at full steam. It goes right for the jugular, making no apologies as it rips the souls and tears the faces of everything in its path, leaving sweat-soaked, tear-stained, adrenaline-fueled bodies in its wake.

On ‘Whole’ SOiL has gone back to basics, adopting a “if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it” mentality that truly works on this record. They have long since laid the soil and planted the seed, and although it has been both an enduring and rigorous process, the time for harvest is now. ‘Whole’ is the product of this very harvest, and, with its arrival, the band can finally enjoy the long-awaited fruits of their labor.


‘Shine On’ 

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