Disturbed, a Chicago nü metal band known for hard-hitting rock songs like The Sickness, isn’t precisely recognized for its love of delicate folk music from the 1960s and 1970s. Nonetheless, in a live performance on Conan in 2016, the award-winning heavy metal band performed Simon and Garfunkel’s iconic song, The Sound of Silence — and it’s surprisingly terrific. The album cover is from their 2015 album Immortalized.
Bands have endlessly covered the decades-old Billboard song across the years. Artists have recorded over 60 versions of the legendary folk-rock song since its release in 1965. This incorporates more current versions by musicians such as James Blake, who released his electronica version in 2015. But, at least for Blake, the cover looks appropriate. In terms of Disturbed, it’s difficult to picture the metal band’s name being used in the same phrase as folk-pop. However, the band’s Conan performance demonstrates that the alternative metal outfit is more diverse than we give them credit for.
Frontman David Draiman offers an undoubtedly magnificent performance on the Conan stage, accompanied by a crowded string orchestra, a piano, and a pair of gigantic kettledrums, converting Simon and Garfunkel’s folk-rock song into something altogether different. That’s not to imply Draiman goes metal on the song; electric guitars are noticeably lacking from this Disturbed performance. Instead, Draiman’s unique baritone lends the song a deeper tone. Even when Draiman is required to sing high notes, he does it with amazing ease. Allow it to state that Draiman is not simply a decent singer in the metal genre. He breathes fresh life into a treasured American classic with elegance and flair, bringing something new to the song’s lengthy musical history.
However, given the band’s popularity in the early 2000s, this may not come as a surprise to fans. The band’s single The Sickness, released in 2000, rocketed to the top of the charts. T he album charted on the Billboard 200 and was ultimately certified five times platinum. The band had even more commercial success with their 2015 album Immortalized, which also topped the charts. James Christopher Monger says in AllMusic’s review of the 2015 album, which features The Sound of Silence cover, that the album provides listeners late-2000s heavy rock packed high with bottom-heavy riffs, piston-like drumming, and massive contemporary rock radio-ready choruses.
The band’s blatantly melodramatic reading of Simon & Garfunkel’s Sound of Silence, which effectively employs the pared-down piano and vocal treatment that helped Gary Jules resurrect Tears for Fears’ Mad World, and the anthemic and delightfully upbeat mid-album gem The Light, amaze with their unabashed theatricality and strong vocal turns from David Draiman, he writes on the cover.
However, in order to truly appreciate Draiman’s powerful vocal turns and the cover’s delightful theatricality, you need see the performance. There’s something for all, both folk and metal lovers.
Disturbed "The Sound Of Silence" 03/28/16
On This Day In #CONAN History: Disturbed performed their Grammy-nominated cover of "The Sound of Silence."Posted by Team Coco on Thursday, 28 March 2019