Testify (P.O.D. album)
|Studio album by P.O.D.|
|Released||January 24, 2006|
|Recorded||December 2004 - July 2005 at the John Philips Estate in Palm Springs, California, The Plant in Sausalito, California, Aerowave Studios in Encino, California, Signature Sound in San Diego, California and Henson Studios in Hollywood, California|
|Genre||Alternative metal, Christian metal, rap metal, nu metal, reggae rock|
|Producer||Glen Ballard, P.O.D.|
Limited Edition cover
|Singles from Testify|
|Jesus Freak Hideout|||
Testify is alternative metal band P.O.D.'s sixth studio album and fourth major-label album. It was originally set for a December 2005 release but finally slated for January 24, 2006 by Atlantic Records. This is P.O.D.'s first major-label album not produced by Howard Benson. The full album was leaked to file-sharing networks on January 20, 2006, just four days before its release. It was also their last album with Jason Truby on guitar, before he left the band in December 2006.
This album was also available in the Testify (Limited Edition) version with a bonus CD featuring commentary by the band on every song on the album, as well as four bonus songs and a remix that didn't make the album. The album's first single, "Goodbye for Now," went on to become the No. 1 music video on MTV's TRL and became P.O.D.'s unprecedented 4th No. 1 video. The song also enjoyed heavy play on the radio. Testify became the No. 1 selling Christian album on Billboard for several weeks and, as of May 2006, had been in the Top 25 for a total of 16 weeks. It opened at No. 9 on the Billboard 200 with 58,000 scans and has sold over 210,000 copies in the US and over 500,000 copies worldwide.
Musical style and production
Six months prior to meeting their new producer, Glen Ballard, P.O.D. had begun writing and demoing songs for the album. Vocalist Sonny Sandoval described working with Ballard, citing "We didn't even expect him to work on the heavy stuff, just more of the laid-back stuff, but once he heard everything, he wanted to be a part of it." The ambitious Ballard also included elements such as his own piano work.
Whereas Payable on Death shifted away from the nu metal style P.O.D. had previously established, Testify saw its return in tracks like "Lights Out" and "Sounds Like War". "On the Grind" particularly focuses on hip hop. Other songs rely on more formal singing, as heard in "Goodbye for Now" and "This Time," and reggae singing, namely those featuring Matisyahu.
Said bassist Traa Daniels, "This album defines who we are musically as a foursome more than any other album that we've ever done." He added, "What we tried to do on this album. . . was to take people on a journey musically. . . I think we have a lot of different elements." Sonny Sandoval also noted, "We have one of the heaviest songs we ever wrote and one of the softest songs we ever wrote."
Upon release, Testify was met with mixed reception from major music publications. On an aggregate score out of 100, Metacritic gave it 55 based on 11 reviews. Jason Bracelin of Blender gave the album 2 stars out of 5 and proclaimed, "On their fifth disc, these 'jah soldiers' run low on ammo" and elaborated that "on the ska-tinged 'Strength of My Life,' they sound like the world’s most polite rude boys, while 'Goodbye for Now' is the kind of listless modern rock that could be bottled and sold as a sleep aid." Rolling Stone's Christian Hoard similarly noted "Testify is not as pompous or overblown as you might think; it just feels tired. . . The most notable aspect of Testify, in fact, is how little P.O.D., or their guitars, have to say."
Allmusic's Matt Collar, however, gave the album 4/5 rating and considered guitarist Jason Truby's work a "truly inspired and technically brilliant performance." He also commended Sandoval's enthusiastic vocals regarded the album as representing "a band reborn."
|1.||"Roots in Stereo" (featuring Matisyahu)||4:42|
|3.||"If You Could See Me Now"||3:07|
|4.||"Goodbye for Now"||4:34|
|5.||"Sounds Like War"||3:53|
|6.||"On the Grind" (featuring Sick Jacken)||4:25|
|8.||"Mistakes & Glories"||3:38|
|9.||"Let You Down"||4:15|
|11.||"Strength of My Life" (featuring Matisyahu)||3:37|
|13.||"Mark My Words" (featuring Sick Jacken)||3:43|
|14.||"Not Your Kind" (Japan bonus track)||2:37|
|15.||"Your Eyes" (Wal-Mart exclusive bonus track)||4:23|
|1.||"Here We Go" (Previously unreleased but was put on Greatest Hits: The Atlantic Years)||3:28|
There is also a limited edition copy that has a second disc featuring exclusive web content, commentaries for all the songs, and the following bonus tracks:
- "Generation" - 4:25
- "Bridge to Burn" - 4:26 Payable on Death b-side
- "Will You (Chris Vrenna Remix)" - 3:54 originally on the Will You Single
- "Every Time I Die (Demo)" - 3:31
- "New Wave (Demo)" - 3:39 demo of "Let You Down"
- Sonny Sandoval - Lead vocals
- Jason Truby - Guitar
- Traa Daniels - Bass guitar
- Wuv Bernardo - Drums
- Jordan Orava - Synth
Other Crew/Guest Musicians
- Glen Ballard - Programming, keyboards, production
- Jonathan Davis - Was scheduled to perform backup vocals on the song "Mistakes and Glories" but could not due to scheduling conflicts. Jason Truby instead recorded the sections left for Davis.
- "Testify Reviews, Ratings, Credits, and More at Metacritic". Metacritic. Retrieved 2012-06-23.
- Collar, Matt. "Testify - P.O.D.". Allmusic.
- "Album Reviews Archive". CBN.
- "Testify, Christian Music Reviews". Christianity Today. Archived from the original on 2006-01-28.
- "P.O.D. - Testify". Cross Rhythms.
- Hermes, Will (2006-01-30). "Testify Review". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2012-03-17.
- Spence D. (2006-01-24). "P.O.D - Testify". IGN. Retrieved 2013-01-19.
- "P.O.D., "Testify" Review". Jesus Freak Hideout.
- Bansal, Vik (2006-01-23). "P.O.D. - Testify". musicOMH. Retrieved 2012-06-23.
- Hoard, Christian (2006-01-23). "Testify : Review". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 2006-02-07. Retrieved 2012-03-17.
- Catucci, Nick (2006-01-31). "P.O.D., 'Testify' (Atlantic)". Spin. Retrieved 2012-08-18.
- Harris, Chris Simon Cowell's Creation Beats Foxx And Blige For Billboard #1 MTV.com (February 1, 2006). Retrieved on 4-15-09.
- Moss, Corey P.O.D. Find New Hope With Interfaith Matisyahu Marriage MTV.com (January 25, 2006). Retrieved on 4-15-09.
- http://www.blender.com/guide/reviews.aspx?id=3697[dead link]