During the year 2000 the world was presented with A Perfect Circle. Their debut album Mer De Noms was released to great fanfare and critical acclaim. Mer De Noms also featured a rebirth of sorts to what had been missing for quite sometime, making a cohesive album. Songs such as “Judith,” “The Hollow,” “Magdalena,” “3 Libras,” “Rose,” and “Thinking Of You” all were such standout tracks that left a lasting impact. There were a couple songs (“Thomas” and “Over”) that were out of place on their own but in the context of the album as a whole they fit. The first half of the album really shines but tends to drift and fall away towards the end. Production wise it is above superb.
In 2003 A Perfect Circle released Thirteenth Step. This album marked a growth and departure from the more polished sound of their previous album. It seemed that Maynard’s time back in Tool in between albums gave him new perspective on the direction on which to write for A Perfect Circle. The thematic tone of the album provided quite a distinctive backdrop for how the music sounded, was produced and how the songs were placed in the album. Songs such as “Weak and Powerless,” The Noose (my personal favorite),” “Blue,” “The Outsider,” and “Pet” again can stand out on their own, but really hit home more in the album as a whole. Production wise there is a more raw feel to it. It almost helps get under your skin faster and sink in.
Both records are totally different but all the while great in their own right. I lean more towards Thirteenth Step.
Where do you stand?
By: Brian Lacy