Overall Score: 8/10 Songwriting: 9/10 Originality: 6/10 Lyrics: 9/10 Pros: The album still rocks after 20 years and the live tracks are well recorded Cons: The Nirvana cover is unnecessary and when we already got Disclaimer 2 in 2004 is a 3rd copy needed?
20 years ago, South African rockers Seether burst onto the scene after moving to the States to spread their post-grunge sound to the masses still hungry for more after Puddle Of Mudd managed to rescue the genre from whatever state George Bush left it in and as debut albums go, Disclaimer is one of the best.
Gasoline still shocks and rocks in equal measure, while Fine Again oozes angst and self loathing (very popular at the time). Pride feels far too well written for a debut album and Sympathetic is so pop it’s the polar opposite of songs like Driven Under and Your Bore, but still feels natural and, more importantly, fits with the rest of the album.
Fans of Seether, whether there at the beginning or discovering later, will know how great Pig and Fuck It are and this new 2022 polish the tracks have received have made them sound even better and will be sure to bring the masses to see the band play at this year’s Download Festival in June.
Closing the album with acoustic Broken has always been an interesting choice, but it’s a good one nonetheless. The song was later made more famous, when it was re-recorded as a duet with frontman Shaun Morgan’s then girlfriend Amy Lee of Evanescence, but what we have here is the original performance, which is then marred by a frankly pointless live acoustic performance of Nirvana’s Something In The Way, seems like a poor choice considering the obvious similarities between the two bands.
Disclaimer is a great album that still holds up today and will no doubt be still be a great album in another 10 years, but this 20th anniversary edition also includes some live tracks for listener enjoyment, which immediately launches the listener into 2003 with Morgan instructing everyone to “get the fuck up” as the band rip into Gasoline.
69 Tea and Needles follow and it’s clear Seether can bring it live just as well as on record and the crowd are in the palm of their hand, especially during “new single” Driven Under. The band are tight and with the exception of the intro to Your Bore where Morgan takes a moment to dedicate the track, nothing is drawn out or added to in order to add any sort of spectacle, it’s just four dudes playing some rock tunes.
They air Hang On from the Daredevil soundtrack, which is swiftly followed by Burrito (which the band actually wrote for Daredevil, but didn’t get picked) and this is probably the weakest part of the show, but luckily Fuck It is up next and the energy all comes flooding back along with visions of moshpits and people going crazy for it. After the big crash ending it’s time to calm down again with a closing Broken, which also sounds just as good here as on the album.
It’s a great set, by a band still young and hungry, but getting the deserved recognition and if they can put on half as good a performance as this at Download everyone will have a great time.
Disclaimer – 20th Anniversary is available now via Craft Recordings.
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