Sept. 19, 2002

Chicago is Still Disturbed And "Down With The Sickness"

By Randy J. Klodz

Chicago-bred metal outfit Disturbed held their new album's release celebration at the intimate Vic Theatre on Sept. 19, by playing a free, exclusive concert that served both as a "Thank you" to the fans of Chicago, and a warm up for Disturbed's supporting spot on Korn's "Pop Sux! Tour."

"We thought about holding this in a larger room," Disturbed vocalist David Draiman said to the packed Vic Theatre crowd, "but we wouldn't feel the sweat." Those in in attendance had to gain admittance to the show by winning tickets from Chicago alternative-rock station Q101.

Disturbed—Draiman, guitarist Dan Donegan, bassist Fuzz and drummer Mike Wengren—played a 13-song set that included previous hits "Stupify," "Down With The Sickness" and "Voices," but relied more on machine-gun lighting and assaulting fans with a taste of their new songs. After all, the event was titled the "'Believe' CD Release Show."

Disturbed released "Believe" on Sept. 17, the follow-up to their multi-platinum debut album "The Sickness." Though the new album showcases Disturbed's fondness for heavy-hitting metal on "Rise," "Liberate" and "Bound," Draiman and his now-famous bald head and metallic goatee spend more time singing, instead of barking, on this effort.

Midway through "Mistress," the green lights swirled as Draiman stood upon the monitors and quietly sang: "Look at what you've done to me / You've become my enemy / Poisoning the world for me / Take away my everything / Weakened as I am," behind a rare guitar solo from Donegan. Other "Believe" tracks that Disturbed showcased included "Devour," "Intoxication," "Remember" and the new hit single "Prayer."

Disturbed and TRUSTcompany will serve as supports for Korn's tour that begins on Oct. 8 at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, N.H., and runs through Nov. 11. Though the "Pop Sux! Tour" does not make its way through Chicago, Draiman made amends with the crowd: "When we come back, we're gonna play a room ten times this size," Draiman said to the crowd proceeding the show's closer "Stupify."

David Draiman of Disturbed Photo: Randy J. Klodz