Album Review: Silver Snakes – Saboteur

Saboteur (noun) sa-bə-ˈtər – a person who destroys or damages something deliberately.

Alex Estrada, vocalist/guitarist for Los Angeles rock band Silver Snakes, said that this album “follows a character that manipulates others and has to face their actions.” This culminates into the band’s most ambitious and experimental album yet. In the current oversaturated world of heavy music, Silver Snakes sets themselves apart from the pack with excellent songwriting, proficient musicianship, and influence from several different genres. 

The album begins with the aggressive “Electricity,” a track which booms with hardcore vocals and bludgeoning guitars. It is followed by the industrial-tinged “Glass,” and the constant stylistic changes demand the listener to follow the journey this character follows through the dark themes of manipulation and retribution. The reason this journey works so well is that the band explores these genres—from hardcore to industrial to doom metal—and excels at each one. Several tracks—“Devotion,” “Dresden,” and closer “The Loss”—clock in over seven minutes each, adding to the unpredictability of the album by allowing you to get lost in bellowing guitars and intricate drumming. Even when the band slows down a bit, each individual member can shine, such as on the pulsating “Charmer,” where the vocals take a backseat to drummer Daniel Pouliot’s biting percussion.

“Stake your claim / Commit your blood onto the coals,” proclaims Estrada on the track “Red Wolf.” This sentiment holds true to an album which showcases the pain of ruining your life while providing the catharsis necessary to take responsibility and make things better. This album is challenging and heavy, but it feels more meaningful and worthwhile because of it.

Rating: 7 Slices out of 8
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Be sure to check out the album and to catch them on tour with Coheed and Cambria, Glassjaw, and I The Mighty:

02/22 Boston, MA. – House of Blues
02/25 Royal Oak, MI – Royal Oak Music Theatre
02/26 Chicago, IL – Aragon Ballroom
02/27 Saint Paul, MN – Myth Live Event Center
02/29 -Columbus, OH – The LC Indoor Pavilion
03/01 Pittsburgh, PA – Stage AE – Indoor
03/02 Washington, DC – Echostage
03/04 New York, NY – Madison Square Garden
03/05 Philadelphia, PA – The Fillmore
03/07 Raleigh, NC – The Ritz
03/08 Charlotte, NC – The Fillmore Charlotte
03/10 Miami Beach, FL – The Fillmore Miami Beach
03/11 Orlando, FL – Hard Rock Live
03/12 Saint Petersburg, FL – Jannus Live
03/14 Atlanta, GA – Tabernacle
03/15 Nashville, TN – Marathon Music Works
03/17 Houston, TX – Revention Music Center
03/19 Dallas, TX – South Side Ballroom
03/21 Tempe, AZ – The Marquee
03/22 Los Angeles, CA – Hollywood Palladium
03/23 San Francisco, CA – The Masonic
03/25 Las Vegas, NV – Brooklyn Bowl Las Vegas
03/26 Salt Lake City, UT – The Complex
03/27 Denver, CO – Fillmore Auditorium

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