This month the Crystal Method released their long-awaited self-titled 9th record (Divided by Night was their previous, in 2009). The album was due last year but delayed by Scott Kirkland’s brain surgery. How does it stack up?
The sound this time around isn’t terribly indicative of the Method in the past. I always categorized them as aggressive and gritty, with in-your-face beats and dirty synths. Here is a much cleaner Crystal Method, with sound choices seemingly more pop influenced. It appears that they’re reaching toward the more current mainstream radio crowd.
“Grace”, which features an interestingly-placed cameo from LeAnn Rimes, is pleasant and poppy. As is “Over It”, featuring Dia Frampton… definitely a track that will appeal to a Clear Channel playlist. Whether this is a good thing or not is for you to decide, but personally I found myself yawning and skipping tracks. I’m now tempted instead to put on put on their 2009 track “Drown in the Now” featuring Matisyahu. That one is just badass.
Also present on Crystal Method are dubstep elements… something that seems to be on it’s way out as a genre, and probably a better choice of aesthetic if it was done a few years ago.
It’s tolerable. The biggest shining moment on this effort, by far, is “Difference” with vocals by Frankie Perez. This this tune is as good as any past Method track, IMO, and is sure to be stuck in your head. Smooth, heavy, groovy…
Bottom Line: It’s ok. It’s listenable, and would make a great background choice while shopping at the Gap or Forever 21. However, if you like Crystal Method for what they’ve been known for in the past, I’d skip this one.
Notable tracks: “Difference” (ft. Frankie Perez), “Jupiter Shift”
Categories: Album Reviews