Remember Kid Rock’s incomprehensible anthem “Bawitdaba?” Disturbed’s single “Voices” is just like that, and it all starts right on the cover, with the group’s name written in typewriter font over a bunch of wallet-chained white guys looking sullen and hostile, yet elusively sensitive.
Kid Rock’s track may resound more stubbornly in pop culture’s conscience, but “Voices” draws from many musical sources, creating a much more versatile sound. This is most noticeable in their vocal style, reminiscent of Korn’s unique vocal acrobatics, a frantic and rapid sequence of emotions with alternate rapping and singing. Disturbed falls short of the intense diversity and technique heard on such Korn tracks as “Ball Tongue” though.
Disturbed’s bass style brings Papa Roach to mind, but to the band’s credit, they don’t seem nearly as whiny. Nonetheless, examine my attempt to paraphrase the lyrical content of “Voices”: “Soooo, I can breathe in, Soooo, I can breathe in, Yeah. NO I can breathe in, I can breathe in. No. Wake up, are you alive, are you gonna listen to me? I’m gonna talk about some freaky sh*t now. Someone is gonna die. When you listen to me, gonna die, gonna…”
This comes off as neither depressed nor threatening thankfully, but rather as playful and a bit whacked out. That’s not to say the lyrical content is very impressive, and such negative compliments don’t mean much.
One area that Disturbed may tap into in future songs is the use of old-school electronic sounds. “Voices” opens up with a few seconds of electro-new wave sounding chords. These come in occasionally, but are never integrated and instead feel “tacked on.” Of course, the industrial/metal groups have already implemented fusion in numerous ways. Overall, “Voices” isn’t anything very compelling, nor is it nearly as good as the originators of this sound, such as Korn and Tool.