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The Mass Media

Saliva Stained Rock Story

Saliva Stained Rock Story

I’ll be completely honest: I haven’t heard too much about Saliva since about 2002, when their single “Click Click Boom” was propelling them to the spotlight, particularly the use of it by World Wrestling Entertainment for one of their pay-per-views that same year. Once that song left the airwaves, the last I heard from them was lead singer Josey Scott and Chad Kroeger from Nickelback made “Hero” for Spiderman.

Saliva produces “radio-friendly alternative rock,” similar to the horrible bands Creed and Nickelback, and the occasionally decent band Disturbed. Their latest album, Blood Stained Love Story, which hit the racks on Jan. 23, continues this trend.

The first track and single is “Ladies and Gentlemen.” I must say, it’s ridiculously annoying. It’s a rather self-fulfilling track, touting lyrics like, “For a feast for your eyes to see/An explosion of catastrophe” and “Your jaws will be on the floor/After this you’ll be begging for more.”

How obnoxious. The track lyrics read like a song for a rap battle, only in more coherent sentences. It’s nice that you feel good about what you do, but shouldn’t you leave the affirmations to your fans? Somehow, though, the song did make its way to the top of the mainstream rock charts in the US. Please, don’t ask me how.

The next two songs, “Broken Sunday” and “Never Gonna Change” were rather catchy. At first, “Broken Sunday” reminded me of a Seether song of which I can’t remember the name and “Never Gonna Change” had a guitar flavor that sounds a little similar to some 311 songs, but they both became their own rock love songs after the intros.

Passing through the “Valley of Love” brings me to track four, “King of the Stereo.” It’s another one of those “I’m such an effing bad ass” tracks. The melody of the song echoes that of their first hit, “Click Click Boom,” which is even mentioned in one of the lyrics: “It only took one song for you to realize/Click click boom, the king is here tonight.” Just like the lead track, it reads like a song caught up in a rap battle. Yeah, it took only one song for me to realize that this album may not be as good as I had hoped.

Let’s just go to the next song: “One More Chance.” All right, despite its use of the phrase “Everybody sing,” it’s a decent track. It’s about doing just that: getting another chance to fix a situation or advance yourself. This is the good kind of self-empowering song, because everyone can relate to trying again “until this race is won,” but not everyone can relate to being king of the stereo.

When I read the title of “Going Under,” I was hoping for an Evanescence cover. Alas, it was not. However, it was not disappointing-this song was better than expected. The lyrics are about trying to find who are you. The sound kind of echoes artists such as Bright Eyes, minus the cocaine, folk influences and strong metaphors. It’s another track that spans more of an audience than the egotistical bunch of suburbanites who listen to songs like “King of the Radio.” The use of softer melodies from both the guitars and the drums adds to the serene thoughtfulness of the lyrics.

“Starting Over” has more mellow music and appears to be on the same topic as “Never Gonna Change,” as the lyrics “Someone take me away from the one who betrays/And things won’t ever be the same/I’m starting over” hint to. It’s a really good track, and it pulls on emotional strings. The bridge makes me feel kind of sullen: “You were my blood you were my bones/How could you ever leave me cold.” It just makes me think, aw, somebody needs a hug.

The last song on the album is titled “Here With You” and is about being far away from home and the trials of a long-distance relationship. A song that I’m sure Scott wrote for his wife, I think this one speaks out the most to me. This is the one song that I fully understand (my boyfriend lives in my home state of Michigan), and the chorus made me a little bit morose. The words, “From Memphis to Oklahoma/From Boston to California/From Detroit to Arizona/I will always be, forever/Here with you.” If the cities Boston and Detroit had not been mentioned, I’m sure it would have hit me a little less.

At the conclusion of the album, I wasn’t quite sure where I stood. I mean, it has its pluses and minuses. Maybe I’m just too much of a whiny emo kid to understand, I don’t know. Saliva produced a couple of winners in here, and I’m afraid that those are the songs that won’t be released for the general, radio-listening public.