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P.O.D. - Testify

P.O.D., Testify

Review by Jack Foley

FOR those that don’t know, P.O.D. stands for ‘Payable On Death’ and their music sits somewhere between the heaviest excess of Limp Bizkit and the hip-hop/nu-metal of Linkin Park.

A while back, they had a hit single with Youth of the Nation but have since failed to find much chart success.

Hailing from San Diego, the band now release their fourth studio album in the form of Testify and it’s their most powerful and heavy work yet.

Die-hard fans will probably lap it up but the album remains an acquired taste with only a couple of notable tracks to its name.

The first of these is album opener, Roots In Stereo, which combines the trademark aggressive guitars with guest vocals from acclaimed Hasidic reggae superstar, Matisyahu.

It provides an interesting contrast that works extremely well, especially during the chorus. But you can’t help feeling that Fort Minor have whisked in and set new standards for this sort of hybrid hip-hop sound.

The overall tone of the album is summed up on second track, Lights Out, which falls into a more traditional headbanging sound that is replicated at several other stages.

Sadly, it feels like the band is on cruise control rather than stretching itself.

Far better is the slightly more mellow Goodbye For Now, when Linkin Park comparisons are sure to fall into place. It’s easy to get into, boasts a strong chorus and some decent rap-style verses.

On The Ground is a rap-heavy diversion that benefits from the presence of Boo-Yaa T.R.I.B.E. and Sick Jacken from underground LA-based rap duo, The Psycho Realm.

It sounds distinctly American and fits into two halves – the aggressive verse and the altogether more mellow chorus. But it works well and leaves you pining for more.

The album then slips into a heavy rock slumber until the return of Matisyahu on Strength of My Life, but by then it’s too late.

P.O.D’s Testify could have benefited from a little more experimentation and a little less head-banging. When it’s good, it can be really impressive but the highlights merely serve to make the failures seem all the more glaring.

Track listing:
1. Roots In Stereo
2. Lights Out
3. If You Could See Me Now
4. Goodbye For Now
5. Sounds Like War
6. On The Grind
7. This Time
8. Mistakes And Glories
9. Let You Down
10. Teachers
11. Strength Of My Life
12. Say Hello
13. Mark My Words