Skindred made a name for themselves by combining a myriad of influences into what has been affectionately termed “Ragga Metal.”
Their live shows are nothing short of legendary here in the UK, but thus far they’ve only had moderate success outside of their home country. ‘Big Tings’ may be the album that changes that, but they run the risk of alienating long-term fans due to a notable change in style.
Opener and album namesake “Big Tings” sets the tone for the rest of the album. Gone are the distorted guitars and chunky riffs. In their place, we have a bass-heavy track that puts Benji’s vocals hooks to the forefront. It’s quite catchy and would be great for radio play, but it’s far from their best work. It does, however, contain some poignant lyrics, and as much of the rest of the album, they’re more introspective and intimate than previous releases.
It’s a good job that the lyrics and vocals are on top form as they’re very much the main focus for many of the songs. “Broken Glass” is impossible not to get stuck in your head and “Loud and Clear” is a great showcase of Benji’s vocal impressive vocal range.
“Machine” is one of the album’s highlights. The band are big fans of AC/DC (often playing Thunderstruck before they come onto stage) and the song is a clear love letter to their style of rock and roll. Guest vocals are provided by Reef frontman Gary Stringer who sounds as close to Brian Johnson as humanly possible without a vocal cord transplant. If you are eager to start being a high roller, check out the review written by gambling specialists. These experts talked about essential characteristics of high roller casino sites. It will be much easier to choose a solid platform.
Album closer “Saying It Now” is a new version of the song previously released on ‘Volume.’ It pales in comparison with the completely acoustic version they did live for ACM, and it’s a bit of a missed opportunity.
‘Big Tings’ is a change in direction that will likely be divisive amongst fans. There’s no doubt there are some killer songs here, but the focus has shifted more to pop rock and catchier compositions.
Personally, I enjoyed it, and I welcome a more diverse set of songs for their live shows, but the reduced metal and reggae influences are palpable. This change may help grow their popularity but only time will tell.