Filter – The Sun Comes Out Tonight
Two decades ago, Richard Patrick, touring guitarist for Nine Inch Nails, decided to leave Trent Reznor and co. to form a new project with Brian Liesegang. Now, five studio albums and over a dozen members later, Filter have returned, without Liesegang but with their sixth album The Sun Comes Out Tonight.
With such a title, you might expect a quite positive and calm album. Opener We Hate It When You Get What You Want instantly proves this not to be the case. An aggressive guitar riff is only shadowed by Patrick’s angry, violent lyrics as he repetitively shouts the title. The track also shows the album’s negative nature with lyrics such as “come die with us tonight”.
The second song on the album What Do You Say initially sounds much the same as the first. This is the main problem with the album: there are many similarities between the tracks and the clichéd, thrashing guitar matched with the in-your-face rapid lyrics is featured across the record. For example, the opening scream of What Do You Say is near enough an exact copy of the scream at the beginning of Self Inflicted, as if it has just been recycled. For true fans this will not be a problem as Filter have kept to this formula for years with great results, but for newcomers this might just seem lazy.
Saying that, there are a few surprising exceptions on this album where Filter step out of their comfort zone. It’s My Time and It’s Just You would sound more fitting on a singer-songwriter album with their timid vocals and piano accompaniment. Elsewhere, First You Break It sounds like Filter’s attempt at being the next Boys Like Girls or You Me At Six. Finally, Surprise delivers probably the most different sound the band has ever made: using electronic beats and acoustic guitars, they create a catchy pop tune that could easily top the charts.
The Sun Comes Out Tonight demonstrates that when Filter move away from their usual heavy rock sound, they are at their best. Should the band want to expand their audience in the future, they would be right in choosing an album that focuses on their quieter side, as portrayed on Surprise. Hopefully Filter will make the right decision.
The Sun Comes Out Tonight is released on the 4th of June, but you can pre-order the album here.
Watch the music video for What Do You Say here: