An incredible return
For the first time in 14 years, A Perfect Circle has released a new album. After working on the album for nearly ten years, they have released Eat The Elephant, and the final result definitely reflects the years of effort put into its creation. This is A Perfect Circle’s fourth album since forming in 1999, and the group sounds as great as ever. Consisting of founders Billy Howerdel on guitar, bass, vocals and keyboard, and Tool vocalist Maynard James Keenan on vocals, along with Matt McJunkins on bass and Jeff Friedl on drums, Eat The Elephant is easily one of the best albums of the year so far.
Eat The Elephant starts with the titular “Eat The Elephant.” Like a lot of the songs on the album, it’s a longer song, but it’s the perfect choice to begin the album. It has softer dream-like vocals yet it remains incredibly powerful. The light drumbeat in the background really ties the song together, as it perfectly compliments the vocals. The lyrics are important to note as well, as they seem to be referencing the need to take a chance in life, “Just take the swing/ Just take the bite/ Just go all in.” Advice that A Perfect Circle definitely followed with this album.
Another notable early song on the album is “The Doomed,” which is stylistically very different from “Eat The Elephant.” Screaming vocals replace the melodic ones, and the message is angrier, though just as relevant. The song begins immediately with its message, saying, “and the word was death/ and the word was without light/ the new beatitude/ good luck you’re on your own.” It’s a more negative message but it can ring true when referencing the state of the world today.
On a 12-song album, it’s hard to pick which songs stand out the most. Some other great songs, however, are “So Long, and Thanks For All The Fish,” “TalkTalk” and “Delicious.” “So Long, and Thanks For All The Fish” is a rather goofy title taken from Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, and its lyrics are filled with nostalgia. “Now Willie Wonka, Major Tom, Ali, and Leia have moved on” references the recent deaths of some pop culture icons, indicating the passage of time and its effect on life. It’s quite possibly the best song on the album, along with its relevant lyrics it also has an incredible melody.
“TalkTalk” starts off with an echoing effect to the lyrics, making it a bit more psychedelic than the other songs on the album. Its lyrics also have biblical references, as a portion references talking “like Jesus.” It’s just another great example of the band’s ability to create various forms of rock music. “Delicious” on the other hand has a slightly retro feeling to it and bursts with emotion. It starts off slow but then gains more energy, with some fantastic guitar wrapping up the piece. It’s a song that may fly under the radar but is great in its own right.
Eat The Elephant ends with “Get The Lead Out,” which very well could be a reference to Led Zeppelin, as A Perfect Circle has already thrown other recognitions into this album. It’s a more experimental rock style and is the longest song on the album coming in at 6:41. There aren’t many lyrics, and the song relies mainly on the electronic beat that’s featured in it. However, for an album full of nostalgia, it makes sense to end it on a futuristic note. Eat The Elephant is available for purchase now, and A Perfect Circle is currently touring around the U.S. and will be heading to Europe this summer.