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Audioslave

The formation of the supergroup Audioslave resulted in one of the most phenomenal records of the new millennium. Too bad their sophomore release, Out of Exile, is a phenomenal disappointment.

On their debut disc, Audioslave managed to sound like its own entity, far separate from its members' previous work (Soundgarden and Rage Against the Machine). This time around, it appears that the band has tried so hard to keep a unique sound that they have rehashed their catalogs of the '90s. Tracks like "Your Time Has Come," "Doesn't Remind Me," "The Worm" and "Man or Animal" sound like outtakes of Soundgarden's Superunknown and Rage's Battle of Los Angeles.

Most disappointing is the guitar work of the neo-revolutionary Tom Morello. His signature sound that combines de-tuning, wah, distortion and other pedal effects is lost on the new effort. Morello attempts to create a more straightforward sound that combines elements of rock, blues and funk.

Sadly, not even one single track stands out on Out of Exile. Even the tolerable cuts are at best music to ignore. The opener, "Your Time Has Come," features the only two points of interest on this album. One, Morello manages to pull off a half-decent solo that is both psychedelic and captures the essence of the classic Jimmy Page bow-solo. The other is an almost laughable point of interest, and that is drummer Brad Wilk's use of cowbell on the track (Will Ferrell would approve).

Hopefully, Audioslave's energetic live performance hasn't gone to hell as well.

More by Jon Hobson

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