Disturbed is underrated; it's that simple. Five years ago, the band's first album mixed electronic beats and synth textures with crunching guitars. The group was abetted by a frontman, David Draiman, who seemed to let his inner orangutan out at all the right moments. They were more KMFDM than Korn, but got lumped in with the nü-metal crowd anyhow.
The band's follow-up, Believe, was a thoughtful exploration of emotional and spiritual malaise, disguised as a collection of 21st-century power-metal anthems (and one surprisingly beautiful ballad). Draiman expanded his range dramatically, becoming as commanding as a drill sergeant. He even crooned a few tracks for the ladies.
Disturbed's latest, Ten Thousand Fists, combines all their strengths and adds a few new (old) tricks to their bag. For one thing, guitarist Dan Donegan is soloing now, which makes their roots in classic metal more obvious -- a very good thing. The disc's one unredeemable misstep is a cover of Genesis' "Land of Confusion." But a live set featuring all the best songs from three very solid albums will give mainstream heavy-rock fans plenty of reason to jump up and down and pump their fists.
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