Their fifth album, Atavist finds Otep delivering another heaping helping of nu-metal. True to the title, Otep continues to feel like a throwback to the breakdown heavy nu-metal of the late 90s and early 2000s that was pioneered, and subsequently done to death, by bands like Korn. While Otep are by no means an untalented band technically, it feels as if there’s a definite lack of innovation here. Once again, singer Otep Shamaya, whose frantic vocal style ranges from bellowing death growls to creepily sweet, does the bulk of the heavy lifting on the album, putting her vocal talents to work over top of a collection of boilerplate nu-metal jams that are almost indistinguishable from anything that would’ve been released a decade earlier. In a way, the approach makes sense. Otep have never been as heavy as Korn or as progressive as System of a Down, but what they do have that sets them apart is Shamaya, who is able to put on a dynamic performance regardless of how stale the music may be. While this may not help the band win over any new fans after all this time, it will certainly please anyone who has stuck with the band since the turn of the century.
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AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney
Track Listing - Disc 1
Track Listing - Disc 2