ALBUM REVIEW: Corey Taylor – CMFT

Release Date: October 2nd 2020
Label: Roadrunner Records
Website: www.thecoreytaylor.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/thecoreytaylor
Twitter: www.twitter.com/coreytaylorrock

Rating:

With a frontman as outspoken and popular as Corey Taylor, it’s surprising that it’s taken all of these years for a fully fledged solo endeavour to materialise. It’s almost a sign of accomplishment and completion that one of the most arguably presumed albums in recent heavy music history has finally come to fruition… for better or for worse.

‘CMFT’, for all intents and purposes, is a kaleidoscope of essentially every genre the dynamic vocalist has dabbled in. The driving force of the majority of the material is honed with a strong southern edge that’s been apparent in Taylor‘s writing as far back as the criminally underrated ‘Zzyzx Rd.’, the emotional closer from Stone Sour‘s 2006 sophomore effort, ‘Come What(ever) May’.

While it may be initially alarming to hear Taylor take the Black Stone Cherry/Buckcherry route, what’s abundantly clear is that his approach comes from a place of fondness and passion for the genre, as opposed to the pandering cash-grab insincerity that often plagues most southern-tinged hard rock acts.

Vocally, Taylor sounds as fresh and rejuvenated as ever. He’s having the time of his life here, and rather than serving us a reserved, gentle acoustic collection of tracks like an album full of carbon copies of ‘Snuff’ or ‘Through Glass’, he opts to throw his conflicting desires at the wall.

‘Silverfish’ may be one of the most predictable and anticipated cuts, but it’s a refreshingly delicate piece that Taylor has always had a commendable knack for penning. The evident delight and lack of fucks exuded throughout is then immediately amplified by the country, pop-punk ditty, ‘Kansas’.

It’s right around then we reach stinker territory. If you’ve already been unfortunate enough to hear the perplexing, cringe-inducing, rap metal inspired lead single, ‘CMFT Must Be Stopped’, then take solace in the fact that no other song comes close to that level of ill-conceived schlock.

Angsty, immature, forgettable cuts like ‘Culture Head’ and ‘Everybody Dies On My Birthday’ do their best to undermine the preceding material, ultimately weighing the second leg of the album down like a massive anchor dropped from a smoothly sailing ship. It makes the placement of the warm and heartfelt stand-out ‘Home’ all the more bizarre amongst the angrier, poorer portion of the material.

There’s a whole bunch to love on ‘CMFT’ for die-hard Corey Taylor fans, but its unfocused nature and disparate styles make for a rather uneven, and at times even tedious listening experience.