Believe (Disturbed album)

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Believe
Studio album by Disturbed
Released September 17, 2002
Recorded March - April 2002 at Groovemaster Studios in Chicago, Illinois
Genre Alternative metal, hard rock
Length 47:20
Label Reprise
Producer Johnny K, Disturbed
Disturbed chronology
The Sickness
(2000)
Believe
(2002)
Ten Thousand Fists
(2005)
Singles from this album
  1. "Prayer"
    Released: August 14, 2002
  2. "Remember"
    Released: December 3, 2002
  3. "Liberate"
    Released: February 18, 2003

Believe is the second studio album by the American metal band Disturbed. It was released on September 17, 2002. Believe debuted at number 1 on the Billboard 200 chart,[1] making it Disturbed's first number 1 debut, shipping over 284,000 copies in its first week. It was certified double platinum by the RIAA in the United States on September 23, 2008.

The album contains three successful singles and focuses heavily on religious and spiritual themes inspired by recent tragedies. With greater emphases on melodic dynamics, it also demonstrates a broadening in Disturbed's musical range compared to the heavy onslaught of their debut album. Believe was the last album to feature Steve "Fuzz" Kmak on bass, who was dismissed from the band in 2003.

Background and recording[edit]

With Black Sabbath's August 2001 tour canceled, and Disturbed's opening slot with it, the Chicago quartet planned to use the month following Ozzfest to begin pre-production of their next album while preparing for their own headlining tour.[2]

That summer, vocalist David Draiman's grandfather, an Orthodox Jew, died in Israel. At a young age, Draiman was beloved by his grandfather; however, when Draiman became a heavy metal musician, his elder cut off their communication. It was not until the grandfather fell ill that he wished to see his grandson. But by the time word got to Draiman, who was on Ozzfest, his grandfather had mere hours to live. Regarding his grandfather's death, he noted, "No one could look at the aura I projected over the course of that next week and not feel my pain and those feelings very definitely will present themselves on the record."

That same month, Draiman had surgery to remove a damaged valve that was causing acid to spill on his vocal cords. The successful surgery not only repaired Draiman's voice but also allegedly broadened his vocal range.[3]

The band entered K's Groovemaster Studios in mid March 2002 to begin recording with producer Johnny K, the man behind their debut album. The majority of songs, which reportedly included about 10 at the time, had been written since November the previous year, including "Prayer" which debuted during Ozzfest.[4]

By mid April, Disturbed had completed 12 songs for Believe. In an interview with MTV, vocalist David Draiman elaborated how the reevaluating of his own Jewish heritage and compromises of life as a musician affected his writing. He noted the album as being "the greatest work we have ever done in our lives" but also expressed concern over how fans would react to the vulnerability and vast expression of emotions showcased on the album.[5]

Music and lyrics[edit]

Believe witnessed the band shift away from the waning nu metal scene and place more emphases on lead guitar and melodic complexity. This musical progression would follow through on future Disturbed albums where guitar solos would become commonplace. While The Sickness focused on heavy compositions, Disturbed's sophomore effort varies greater in its range of heaviness and melody, closing with a somber, acoustic ballad entitled "Darkness." Singer David Draiman also wished to demonstrate greater vocal dimension than the intense style he was previously associated with. Nevertheless, he described the content of the album as "pure and unadulterated in every sense of the word 'metal'."[5]

As noted by Draiman, Believe contains overt religious and spiritual themes. These were inspired by various experiences such as the September 11 attacks and the recent death of Draiman's Orthodox Jewish grandfather:

"All the songs on the record revolve around the theme of belief in oneself and in humanity's potential. . . And the right-wing reactions of religious leaders of the world to the events of 9/11 had a lot to do with the original impetus of where this record came from. It angered me beyond any way I could possibly explain. The whole album's about questioning your beliefs to determine what you really can believe in."

Lyrically, the album deals with various other topics as well. "Remember" delves into the cutthroat nature of the music industry as well as Draiman's resistance to indulgent partying; "Awaken" deals with America's never-ending obsession with vacuous "wallpaper music"; the tracks "Bound" and "Intoxication" focus on Draiman's inability to have a meaningful romantic relationship. In an interview, he noted, "I've had various experiences with women over the past two-and-a-half years that have made me have several chips on my shoulder - not in an angry way necessarily, but almost in a pleading way. I'm at a point in my life where I've had my heart torn apart so many times that there's just not much left to it."[5]

In keeping with the lyrical themes, the album cover features symbols of major religions, including the Jewish Star of David, the Islamic crescent, the Wiccan pentacle, and the Christian cross. Draiman explained the meaning of the symbol on stage during the Music as a Weapon II Tour:

"The symbol that you see elevated above the set behind me is a symbol of universal belief."[6]

Touring and promotion[edit]

Believe boasted three singles which gained substantial radio and video airplay. The lead single, "Prayer", featured a video with apocalyptic imagery of a city being destroyed. This led some outlets to refuse to play the video on the grounds that it conjuring similarities to the September 11 attacks. After initially considering to edit the video, Disturbed ultimately chose not to.[7] Follow up singles "Remember" and "Liberate" also charted well and gained significant rotation on radio and television. The title track "Believe," although not a single, would also find its way to radio airwaves.

In 2003, Disturbed headlined Music as a Weapon II with Chevelle, Taproot, and Unloco. A live album, featuring Disturbed's cover of "Fade to Black", would result in 2004. Upon finishing the tour, Steve Kmak was fired by the band because of "personality differences". He was soon replaced by John Moyer,[8][9] and the group joined the Main Stage of Ozzfest 2003.

"Liberate" appeared on the soundtrack for Tony Hawk's Underground 2. "Intoxication" appeared on the soundtrack for NFL GameDay 2004.

Reception[edit]

Critical response[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 62/100[10]
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[11]
Blender 3/5 stars[12]
Entertainment Weekly B+[13]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars[14]
Rock Hard (de) 8/10[15]

Believe currently holds a score of 62 out of 100 on review-aggregating website Metacritic, indicating "generally favorable reviews", based on nine reviews. Allmusic's Bradley Torreano praised the album, declaring that on Believe, Disturbed takes the kind of leap that their heroes in Soundgarden and Pantera had after their respective albums of progress. He also states that "it is not a function of the agitation of the tempo and percussion-based riffing of the past; guitarist Dan Donegan has made great strides in expanding its sound to include more varied guitar work all around." Culturedose.net cited Believe as "one of the best rock albums of 2002."[10] In 2005, Believe was ranked number 429 in Rock Hard magazine's book of The 500 Greatest Rock & Metal Albums of All Time.[16]

Commercial success[edit]

Believe debuted at number 1 on the Billboard 200 chart,[1] making it Disturbed's first number 1 debut, and shipped over 284,000 copies in its first week. By January 2003, SoundScan had recorded over 1 million album sales.[17]

The record was certified double platinum by the RIAA in the United States on September 23, 2008.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Disturbed, except where noted. 

No. Title Length
1. "Prayer"   3:41
2. "Liberate"   3:30
3. "Awaken"   4:29
4. "Believe"   4:28
5. "Remember"   4:11
6. "Intoxication"   3:14
7. "Rise"   3:57
8. "Mistress"   3:46
9. "Breathe"   4:21
10. "Bound"   3:53
11. "Devour"   3:52
12. "Darkness"   3:56

A b-side from the album called "Dehumanized" was later released as a b-side on the "Stricken" single (a song from the band's following album, Ten Thousand Fists). "Dehumanized" is also included on The Lost Children, a b-side compilation.

Personnel[edit]

Credits as adapted from album liner notes[18]

Disturbed
Additional musicians
Production
Others
  • Art direction and design by Mick Haggerty
  • Photography by Stephen Danelian

Chart positions[edit]

Chart procession and succession[edit]

Preceded by
Home by Dixie Chicks
Billboard 200 number-one album
September 28, 2002 – October 5, 2002
Succeeded by
Elv1s: 30 #1 Hits by Elvis Presley
Preceded by
Elv1s: 30 #1 Hits by Elvis Presley
New Zealand RIANZ Albums Chart number-one album
October 20, 2002 – October 27, 2002
Succeeded by
Forty Licks by The Rolling Stones

Certifications[edit]

Country Certification
Australia[32] Platinum
Canada[33] Platinum
New Zealand[34] Gold
United Kingdom[35] Silver
United States[36] 2x Platinum

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Disturbed Interviewed On KISW's 'The Men's Room'; Audio Available". Blabbermouth.net (Roadrunner Records). July 25, 2008. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  2. ^ D'Angelo, Joe and Robinson, Iann (July 9, 2001). Disturbed To Begin Album Following Ozzfest. MTV. Retrieved February 26, 2011.
  3. ^ Wiederhorn, Jon (2003). Disturbed - Naked on a Platter. MTV. Retrieved February 26, 2011.
  4. ^ Wiederhorn, Jon (May 19, 2002). Disturbed Get Over The Sickness And Start New Album. MTV. Retrieved February 26, 2011.
  5. ^ a b c Wiederhorn, Jon (April 10, 2002). Disturbed's Draiman Battles Knuckleheads, Women, Death And Makes Believe. MTV. Retrieved February 26, 2011.
  6. ^ Video on YouTube
  7. ^ Wiederhorn, Jon (August 20, 2002). "Disturbed refuse to re-edit "Prayer" video for airplay". MTV. Retrieved February 26, 2011. 
  8. ^ "Disturbed Finds New Bassist". Ultimate Guitar. May 4, 2004. Retrieved February 26, 2011. 
  9. ^ "Disturbed Debut New Bassist at Hometown Gig". Blabbermouth.net (Roadrunner Records). July 30, 2004. Retrieved March 6, 2009. 
  10. ^ a b "Believe by Disturbed". Metacritic. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  11. ^ Torreano, Bradley. "Believe > Overview > Review". Allmusic. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  12. ^ Mitchell, Ben. "Review Disturbed Believe". Blender. Retrieved April 27, 2010. [dead link]
  13. ^ Tyrangiel, Josh (September 20, 2002). "Music Review Believe (2002) Disturbed". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  14. ^ Cot, Greg (September 10, 2002). "Disturbed: Believe : Music Reviews". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on June 20, 2008. Retrieved February 3, 2011. 
  15. ^ Mühlmann, Wolf-Rüdiger. "Rock Hard review". issue 185. Retrieved 22 May 2013. 
  16. ^ [...], Rock Hard (Hrsg.). [Red.: Michael Rensen. Mitarb.: Götz Kühnemund] (2005). Best of Rock & Metal die 500 stärksten Scheiben aller Zeiten. Königswinter: Heel. p. 37. ISBN 3-89880-517-4. 
  17. ^ D'Angelo, Joe (January 23, 2003). Disturbed Poised For New Attack With Music As A Weapon 2 Tour. MTV. Retrieved February 26, 2011.
  18. ^ Believe liner notes. Reprise Records. 2002. 
  19. ^ "Disturbed - Believe". australian-charts.com. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  20. ^ "Disturbed - Believe" (in German). australiancharts.at. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  21. ^ a b c "Disturbed > Awards > Billboard Albums". Allmusic. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  22. ^ "Disturbed - Believe". danishcharts.com. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  23. ^ "Disturbed - Believe". finnishcharts.com. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  24. ^ "Disturbed > Longplay-Chartverfolgung". Musicline.de (in German). PhonoNet. 
  25. ^ "Discography Disturbed". irish-charts.com. 
  26. ^ "Disturbed - Believe". charts.org.nz. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  27. ^ "Disturbed - Believe". swedishcharts.com. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  28. ^ "Disturbed - Believe". hitparade.ch. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  29. ^ a b c Zywietz, Tobias. "Chart Log UK 1994–2008". Zobbel. 
  30. ^ a b c d e "Disturbed > Awards > Billboard Singles". Allmusic. Retrieved April 27, 2010. 
  31. ^ a b c "Disturbed Album & Song Chart History: Alternative Songs". Billboard. 
  32. ^ "Accreditations - 2007 Albums". Australian Recording Industry Association. 
  33. ^ "Gold & Platinum Certification". Canadian Recording Industry Association. 
  34. ^ "Top 50 albums (#1333)". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. 2002-11-03. 
  35. ^ http://www.bpi.co.uk/certified-awards.aspx.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  36. ^ "RIAA Database Search Results for Disturbed". Recording Industry Association of America.