So who is Greg Puciato? He is best known as the lead vocalist and lyricist of the now disbanded The Dillinger Escape Plan. (TDEP were a foundation to the metalcore genre in the late 90’s and early 2000’s for those who are unfamiliar!) The release for his latest collection of music; titled Child Soldier: Creator of God; was originally due to be released on October 23, 2020. However, according to a number of sources including Loudwire the album was released early due to another reviewer pretty much breaking the rules and leaking it…
People kind of suck.
Onto the music!
Upon the first listening of this record I found myself slightly confused to be honest. But that’s not a bad thing in the slightest. I had to dive into it again to really get a feel for it. After doing that, the initial introduction information included with this album made A LOT of sense. Puciato labels this record as his ultimate declaration of freedom pretty much. With this album he is absolutely showing all sides to who he is as a creative, and as a musician!
Greg Puciato plays just about all of the instruments on this record, with the exception of the drums; which were filled in by Chris Hornbrook (Poison the Well), Chris Pennie(TDEP), and Ben Koller (Killer Be Killed/Converge). There was also additional synthesis on a couple tracks, done by Chris Pennie. I have to point out that these other contributing artists taking part in this kind of musical adventure of an album is admirable. I love when musicians come out of their declared genres and do something really different.
I will not criticize this piece of work like a typical critic. Again, I love when genre barriers are broken. I also love the immense amount of creativity and self that Greg Puciato put into this record. I absolutely respect everything Puciato has done here. It’s not necessarily my cup of tea (or whiskey), but I love the more aggressive tracks, such as “Fire for Water”, and “Deep Set”. I feel like these were great single choices, as well. There’s a shift in the energy around halfway through with “Down When I’m Not”, and I actually really love the ambience and almost atmospheric feel I get from “You Know I Do”. Things briefly pick back up with “Evacuation”, and then slow back down with the closing tracks, “Heartfree” and “September City”. Although that final track hits you with one more BANG towards the end.
Naturally all I have to compare this piece to is the work done on The Dillinger Escape Plan records. I never got into Greg Puciato’s other work, but that’s only because of a lack of exposure. (I’ll likely be checking it out further after this.) In my own conclusion, I have to say that I can definitely see where he lies personally with this album specifically. The contrast between this and TDEP is obvious, while still retaining some of those aggressive elements that I personally love. I also love his unapologetically being himself here. It is a clear example of how multi dimensional he is as a person.
Who is this for?
I would honestly say that if you are a general fan of Greg Puciato’s previous work, you will likely enjoy and appreciate this. It’s hard to give a comparison or even a “If you like this you’ll like this!” comparison. “Fire for Water” currently has over 200,000 streams on Spotify, and “Do You Need Me to Remind You?” is creeping up on 100,000. So obviously there are people listening! It’s definitely worth checking out!
REVOLVER put out a great interview with Puciato out earlier this year, you can check that out HERE!