This June, Disturbed ended their five-year hiatus essentially overnight, announcing that they were not simply back in business but that they had a brand new album already in the can, even doling out first single, The Vengeful One, with the announcement.
The Chicago metallers have always polarised audiences, due in no small part to an unshakeable nu metal tag and, more pointedly, to their broad commercial appeal – an achievement rarely celebrated in the metal community.
Across the past few albums, Disturbed have scarcely tampered with their platinum-certified playbook and on Immortalized, we once again measure their progress in inches rather than miles.
With five years apart – during which all four musicians recorded with various side-projects – you could reasonably expect some appreciable update of the band’s muscular trademark sound, but Immortalized sits comfortably in the middle of the Disturbed catalogue, offering a serviceable but all-too-familiar-sounding buffet of gym-friendly alt-metal. Testosterone-drenched belters like Immortalized, You’re Mine and Fire It Up are virtually indistinguishable from 2010’s Asylum and a dramatically overweening cover of The Sound Of Silence falls well short of the bar set by Bobaflex several years back. By playing it safe and meeting expectations head-on, Immortalized can’t help but feel like a missed opportunity.