Venue Review for Varsity Theatre
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@ Varsity Theatre in Baton Rouge
Change isn’t easy. But Seether vocalist, guitarist and songwriter Shaun Morgan understands that nothing worth accomplishing ever is. “When I was in rehab in 2006,” he recalls, embracing a sense of humorous self-awareness that comes with hindsight, “I learned that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.” In other words: evolution is key not only to surviving but also thriving. It’s a way of thinking that Morgan applies to both himself and to the way his band operates. In a career that’s spanned nearly a decade, the power trio of Morgan, bassist Dale Stewart and drummer John Humphrey that is collectively known as Seether has toured the globe on the strength of five Gold and Platinum-selling albums: steadily growing a devoted fan base while continually pushing creative boundaries. Seether breaks new ground again with its fifth studio LP, Holding onto Strings Better Left to Fray, due out on Wind-up Records in May 2011. As fans and critics are about to hear, change is good.
Holding Onto Strings Better Left to Fray further expands on the dynamic musical growth curve heard on Seether’s 2007 release, Finding Beauty in Negative Spaces, while maintaining a sonic imprint that is undeniably Seether. There are many reasons to be excited. Not only does Seether branch out stylistically on the album’s first single, “Country Song” – which blends a buoyant, aurally addictive hook with the band’s signature searing guitar work – but the singer’s striking new vocal approach is audible from the album’s exhilarating lead track, “No Resolution.” Morgan explains, “On this album, I didn’t scream very much, because that’s not what I wanted to do. For some of the songs, the sentiment behind the lyric wasn’t angry, therefore to sing it in an angry way didn’t make any sense to me. The gritty stuff is easy to do, but it also feels really great to convey emotionally, through my voice, what I’m trying to say, instead of just being a one trick pony.” The result is a collection of compelling vocal performances that conjure an appealing blend of two of Morgan’s chief influences, Kurt Cobain and Tool’s Maynard James Keenan.
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