Ah, Eighteen Visions. A “deep” title: Vanity. Songs with names like “Fashion Show” and “Love In Autumn.” Released by Trustkill in ‘02, at the very advent of Tatecore. I should’ve been warned.
Looking back, I can’t even remember why I bought this thing in the first place. I had probably read some positive review about the band on this very website. And the indie store I was at was having a one-day 2-for-$20 sale on a few select (ironic in this context) CDs. Oh, and the hot pink cover likely had an aphrodisiacal effect on my mind. Those are the only excuses I can present as to why I bought it.
What you get on this album is pretty much what Victory and the like have been spoon-feeding the trendy young masses these past couple of years. But you see, Eighteen Visions is a smart band, so they’ll disguise the trademark soft moments under punchier tones. The Stone Temple Pilot-influenced “I Don’t Mind” is a good example of this. Perhaps the band forgot that this song is about going to take a walk in a garden. Wait, they can’t be too off-the-wall! “The Critic” is the same acoustic song that’s been on all the Tatecore albums ever released. They’ve even had the audacity to include a generic rap-rock number, “Sonic Death Monkey,” in which the singer raps about wanting a “bitch” to “spank [his] monkey cuz [she] knows it’s real funky.” There’s a dumb skit at the end of the album, in which two interchangeable band members discuss stealing a Pantera drawing as their cover art. Just a reminder to all our fans that we’re really really h4rdc0r3 y’all.
Lyrics? “You couldn't tell me that this was the best that you could do / And now you've left me to hang here all alone.” And: “I don’t care about getting any respect / I just care about getting a big fat paycheck.” I made up that second one since I’m doing my best to portray this band as somewhat honest about their intentions.
If the guy doing the Cookie Monster voice ever quits his job or dies of malnutrition, I suggest the singer fills out an application for the spot. He’s got the tone right on key, and I’m sure that loves to pretend to be something he’s not. Plus, he’d probably make a lot more money than he did from the sales of Vanity. It’s no surprise Eighteen Visions later got picked up by a major - they suck, but they have really cute pictures in the liner notes.
Want some final proof on how forgettable this band is? Just before submitting this review, I realized that I’d been calling them Thirteen Visions throughout it. So if your music store ever has a similar sale, and this thing happens to be a part of it, be warned to keep it out of your selections.