Alice Gets Brutal Page 2
by Martin Popoff
Musically, the album is traditional yet uncompromisingly high-fidelity hard music, recorded digitally (a first for Alice), but as Alice laughs, with no patience for flagrant modern industrial elements, "with an all-human cast. For me, technology takes the heart out of everything. Any time you make life easier for man, it suddenly takes the heart out of it. When I hear techno music, I hear music that is basically a machine's idea of music. I hear pulse but no heart. So it is an artificial pulse coming from an artificial place. In other words, when you hear a real drummer play, he makes mistakes. He has timing mistakes. I would personally rather hear that than a perfectly controlled machine that doesn't know how to make mistakes. Expect to hear good hard rock with solid songs."
Our preview listen of the record detected a Sabbath vibe, or a reach back into the classic metal of Alice's pioneering hardware from the '70s. "Sure, that's fine. I think that when you have to create a basis for an album, you have to find some common ground musically, you know? And I think my kind of music will always be hard rock. I'm never going to go techno or country. You know, my roots are in The Yardbirds. We used to listen to everything from The Yardbirds to Stockhausen. It will always be a very 4/4 kind of beat, it will always be right on the money, with driving drums. I don't pretend to be anything other than a hard rock writer, but because I think that's what I'm best at. I do get to weave strange little stories around that kind of writing though, and I do try to get it as quirky as possible, but if you really strip it down to what it is, it's bass, drums and guitars driving hard rock. Some people might call that heavy metal, but it's just good riff rock. That's what it is."
Summing up, Alice had this to say about the album's over-riding philosophy. "If there is any poetry or philosophy, it's from C horror movies from China (laughs). Everybody's got their own philosophies and mine is coming from a certain place. And I didn't harp on where mine is coming from even though I think it seeps through. My job on this album is to portray a place and then just kind of pose the question, do we want to go there? And, you know, I think it's pretty obvious that we don't."