Rockety Rock Rocktober.
With Soulfly and Sepultura singer Max Cavalera on lead vocals.
Probot was the brainchild of Foo Fighters head fighter Dave Grohl. He wanted to create a tribute to the metal and hardcore groups of his youth. Where most people would unpack their old Judas Priest albums and make a an Ipod playlist, Grohl wrote and recorded songs inspired by the singers from old-skool 80’s and 90’s heavy bands. Even better, he got those vocalists to sing on the sessions that would eventually become the Probot album.
All told, Probot is a faithful homage to classic metal. “Red War” captures Chaos AD-era Sepultura in fine fashion. The menacing “Centuries of Sin” goes from a brisk stomping groove to a hurtling breakneck finish. “My Tortured Soul” is an inspired bit of sludge metal. ‘Shake Your Blood”, with Motorhead’s own Lemmy playing bass and growling, leers as good as anything on Ace of Spades.
If there is a criticism to be made, it’s that Grohl could’ve used some more musicians to flesh out the tunes. Grohl’s drums, bass and rhythm guitar work is spot-on, but a few strategically placed guitar solos would’ve turned a few of the unpolished gems into masterpieces. Unfortunately more than a few songs, like “Big Sky” and “Sweet Dreams”, feel like half-completed ideas. Another collaborator, adding guitar parts or secondary riffs, could’ve helped a great deal.
These are niggling complaints though. For most metal fans, Probot is a faithful valentine to some of the best heavy music ever made. Dave Grohl’s work in the Foo Fighters might be a little too poppy and he might be a flaming liberal bedwetter, but you can’t front on his immense talent.
More importantly, when it comes to Probot, the disc ultimately works because Grohl unashamedly lets out his inner head-banger for all to see. His obvious love of the material and the metal-bro energy he brings to the project mostly smooths over any rough patches along the way. If you like heavy music, Probot is a must have album.
ALSO: I’ll be live-tweeting the debate tonight. You know where to find me. Say, do you think Bob “Not Claudia” Schieeeeeeeeffffeerrrrrrr is going to try to buck up St. Barry’s sagging poll numbers?