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Training for Utopia - Throwing a Wrench into the American Music Machine

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OK...Forget everything Training for Utopia has done in the past. They have done something completely different with this album. I've heard some say they just experimented a little. I say that if you weren't told, you may not even recognize that this is the same band. The only thing that really links this album with "Plastic Soul Impalement" is the fact that both are very heavy. Honestly, I was ticked when I first heard this album. I compared it to Plastic Soul and came back very disappointed. After many numerous listens, I have decided that I like the album, but maybe not as much as their previous release. Like I said, they are still very heavy. The heaviest song probably being "Tennessee Midget." This song is very brutal. This along with "Burt Reynolds vs. Godzilla" is in my opinion the best two songs on album. "Burt Reynolds..." has a hilarious outro that has a guy that is in a band and is complaining that he is on the bill to play somewhere, but his band only get to play 15 minutes and the only people there to watch are the other bands and their girlfriends. Another humorous song is "Everything But the Stars is Falling (Baby)." It sounds like a love song. In fact it is all acoustic guitar and singing, but the lyrics talk about keeping a certain person's mouth shut and holding them on their face for days...would that do any good? Kinda the opposite of what you'd expect from such a beautiful sounding song. TFU also dives into the genre of electronica. I think this helps some of the song, but on some it gets very annoying and repetitive. You are on the edge of your seat waiting for them to unleash a barrage of guitars and drums and you get a funky sounding electronic piece. While I'm complaining...the lyrics are also pretty cruddy on this record. When you look at the subject matter on Plastic Soul and compare it with the subject matter (or lack of) here, you will be disappointed. Well, I guess I've spent a lot of this review complaining. Don't get me wrong, I do like this album in a way, but I have to look at it totally separate from Plastic Soul. Kinda like how you can't compare Stavesacre with The Crucified despite the fact that they had the same singer. They are two different bands...which is kinda how I feel after listening to TFU's last two albums.  (Review by Matt)

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