HEALTH – ::Disco2
The instrumental quality is significantly more interesting and entrancing in comparison to the vocals that are monotone at best.
Odd and titillating are about the ways I could describe HEALTH’s 2010 remixed album ::Disco2. ::Disco2 is the remixed version of their 2009, second full-length album Get Color and also features a new track by HEALTH called “USA Boys.”
“USA Boys” and “Before Tigers” (the first version of it, there are 2 other versions on the album) are the two lead off songs on the album ::Disco2 and are by far my two favorite songs on the album. Granted, it takes some time to adapt to the uniqueness of HEALTH. The lead vocals are significantly muffled and unlike most other bands seem to be considered second the instrumentals. Which works for HEALTH considering the instrumental quality is significantly more interesting and entrancing in comparison to the vocals that are monotone at best.
That being said, according to HEALTH, they meant to make the vocals second to the instruments. HEALTH states about their lyrics that they are “purposely kept vague for the listener” so that the listener is unable to relate to the lyrics which is something that they do not want. They even go on to state that they wanted to the lyrics/vocals to have an even quality like a “Zombie melody” or a “Gregorian chant.” Quite frankly, I have never heard of a band making their lyrics and vocals the background to the actual music before.
Oddly enough, I am not too heartbroken that the vocals are second nature and I almost feel like they could be cut entirely from the album as a whole, almost. The lyrics that you do hear and can make out are quite good, but you really have to force yourself to focus in on them. I must say that the most brilliant quality I have found about the band is their use of the drums. Their drumming ability is out of control. Listen to “In Heat” or “Die Slow” for an example.