Chicago-based alternative metal outfit SOiL's fifth album pretty much picks right up where 2006's True Self left off. Lead-off track "Tear it Down" wastes little time in convincing the listener that vocalist A.J. Cavalier is now the definitive SOiL vocalist (he replaced Ryan McCombs in 2004), and his mastery of the notoriously difficult tone between dirty and clean, along with the kind of solid musicality that comes from over a decade of playing together, helps keep Picture Perfect on the north side of mediocre. Never ones for subtlety (the cover features a weepy blonde in her underwear in front of a mirror), SOiL consistently puts out the kind of solid, though not earth-shattering, hard rock that earns slots on action/horror/science fiction movie soundtracks -- stand-out cuts like "Temptation" and "Last Wish" echo Black Album-era Metallica, while less successful tracks like "Lesser Hand" and "Surrounded" aren't too far removed from Creed or Nickelback. Groundbreaking? Absolutely not, but brutal, midtempo radio bullets like first single "Like It Is" never go out of style.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by James Christopher Monger