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Prong | 100% Live | review | metal | Lollipop
100% Live (Locomotive)
by Tim Den
Prong are back! Well... sort of. Just guitarist/vocalist Tommy Victor, actually. But he wrote all the songs anyway, you say? True, but it doesn't quite sound like Prong without drummer Ted Parsons. Or the charisma bassist Paul Raven brought to the band's later stuff. But aaaaaaanyway...
100% Live is the new line-up's attempt to once and for all slap the public in the face and receive the long-overdue credit for trailblazing the industrial/metal genre. C'mon, where do you think Static-X got the idea? But in the face of engineering advances and more inventive younger bands, can Prong still deliver?
In a way yes, cuz it's obvious from the live renditions of these classics that Prong always wrote solid tunes. But also no, in that the new line-up and the limits of live recordings render the material's personality to zilch. If an unfamiliar listener heard Prong for the first time via 100% Live, he/she would probably think this is the product of a decent band, but a bland one. And they'd be missing out on the tumbling thunder of Rude Awakening, the clinical precision of Cleansing, the rubbery bounce of Prove You Wrong, the tilted metalcore of Beg to Differ, and the rough energy of Primitive Origins, all characteristics of the studio recordings missing here. Without these unique traits, a lot of the stuff here sounds dated, a lightweight contender in the ring of modern heavy rock. Maybe their upcoming new studio album will make more of a dent, but 100% Live just isn't going to rise to the top of the heap. Bummer, since these songs really are good...