Sixx:AM – “Prayers for the Blessed: Vol. 2”
In April, Sixx:AM released “Prayers for the Damned: Vol. 1”, (reviewed here) a gritter rock album that peaked at 19th on the US Billboard 200, which featured such hits as “Rise” and “Prayers for the Damned”.
Almost 7 months later, Sixx:AM completed the double-album with the release of “Prayers of the Blessed: Vol.2”.
“Prayers For The Blessed” is without a doubt the most visceral and passionate record that Sixx:A.M. has ever recorded,” lead singer James Michael said, in a press release. “We opened the floodgates on this one. Musically and lyrically we went deeper than we ever have before.”
As we have discussed in the past, Sixx:AM has a very specific sound, one which they do not trend away from on “Prayers: Vol 2.”. You have James Michael’s vocal range jumping all around, Nikki Sixx’s bass guitar rumbling through and D.J. Ashba’s guitar leading the way.
“We thought of this as one big record, but then in a lot ways, we knew that we were going to be releasing them separately, so we did treat them separately, so they would stand alone,” Michael said.” But we put so much effort and thought and care into every single note of both records and we wrote them both at the same time, and then figured out where each song made sense, so I think ‘Vol. 2’ is absolutely as strong, if not stronger than ‘Vol. 1’. There are some songs on there that are really career songs.”
If “Prayers: Vol. 1” was the devil, “Prayers: Vol. 2” was indeed the angel. This album features heavy lyrics but the music feels a lot more upbeat than “Prayers: Vol. 1”
Some tracks that stuck out lyrically through a few listens were: “Wolf At Your Door”, “Helicopters” and “Maybe It’s Time”.
Another track that immediately shot up to the top was “Catacombs”, but for a different reason. This track features only D.J. Ashba and his guitar, in what can be considered Ashba’s “Eruption” moment.
The things Ashba does with his guitar in just one minute and twenty seconds are mind-bending and seemingly surreal.
The featured track below, “Without You”, is an interesting choice for Sixx:AM. Another cover track for the band that they easily handle. History will now read “Without You”, originally written and performed by Badfinger, as covered by both Mariah Carey AND Sixx:AM. Talk about both ends of the musical spectrum.
“We really found ourselves onstage and it’s influencing the way we write,” Nikki Sixx told media members. “We started focusing on our music not only as songwriters and lyricists but also stayed conscious of what would transfer over live to the audience.”
Both Prayers: Vol. 1 and 2 lacked to bring a strong musical punch in record form but after seeing Sixx:AM perform a handful of tracks off of “Prayers: Vol. 1” months ago, there is little doubt that songs from “Prayers: Vol. 2” will bring it when performed live.
I enjoyed this record and give it a solid 3.5 stars out of 5.