STATIC-X, Cannibal  (2006, Reprise)

The skull:
No crossbones for this skull — he just takes those bones and eats them. Like a cannibal! All that cutlery wreathed around his noggin are the tools of the trade he uses to get leg bone into mouth. Whatever works! Those choppers are in top-notch shape, too…they oughta be if they’re gonna be munchin’ bone. Kick ass cover (if you’re 14 years old), although it’s uglied up by that utterly stupid Parental Advisory warning.

The music:
Whether it’s super obscure Italian no-hopes or major label L.A. bands, very often a skull
album cover means “We love Pantera and Roots-era Sepultura.” Goes for Static-X too,
although there’s an added faux-industrial edge due to the use of electronics, samples,
and synth-generated beats. Whatever, it really sucks. I sat through this whole album hoping something interesting would happen. Nearly eight minutes into the album, a weird moment in “Behemoth” dips into the Buckethead-meets-Vai school of guitar work, but it’s brief, and these kinds of moments are rare throughout Cannibal. Any highlights seem to come in the area of the lead guitar work, as another of these rare bright moments comes in “Electric Pulse.” It’s very good actually, but, you know, “any port in a storm,” right? Quite often, Cannibal sounds like a melodic, nuanced Slipknot…a Slipknot-lite, maybe. I’m no metal purist that takes issue with any semi-metal band on a major label (see my Deftones review two skulls prior to this), but this is just dumb jockstrap metal. How does a band so vapid get so huge?
— Friar Wagner