Friday, October 8, 2010

Incubus - Light Grenades (2006)



The good news: Light Grenades is a decent album.  You'll probably like about half of it.  The bad news?  The other half of the disc.
Rating: 3/5


 Light Grenades didn't make me regret listening to it a couple of times for this review.  It's a good album, and one I'll certainly listen to again at some point.  I'll skip Love Hurts every time (because even before it was overexposed on the radio, it sucked), but it will find its way to my ears again someday.  I like this release.  However, it's not without its problems, and that's why I'm not going to be listening to it again, say, tomorrow.  More like next month.

Part of my problem here is that this album feels more like a compilation or B-sides album than a real release, in a way.  While it has it's great moments - tight, locked in grooves and extensive vamping where the band harnesses the energy they have for their craft - it also has some real flops that take away from those brilliant flashes somewhat.  Most of the solid pieces are on the first half of the disc (A Kiss to Send Us Off, Anna Molly), and most of the more unfocused compositions are in the latter half (Pendulous Threads, Paper Shoes).

I love experimentation in music, and I love a band that tries to break new ground, but when an established group wants to evolve, they can't do it halfway.  If the group doesn't fully commit to a cohesive total package in terms of the album as a whole, instead of the end result sounding like the group's new, innovative sound, it usually sounds like some good ideas mixed in with a lot of hazy mediocre leftovers.  To me, this is one of those albums.  While Light Grenades is a solid effort from the SoCal quintet and an interesting milestone in their history, I'd pick S.C.I.E.N.C.E. or Make Yourself over it any day.

Pros: Heavy, tight grooves, classic Incubus feel on some songs, takes artistic risks
Cons: When it fails to deliver it really fails to deliver.

Standout Track - A Kiss to Send Us Off




Check back at midday
for the Track-by-Track rundown, and a little bonus flaver later on in the afternoon before I leave the office to enjoy the weekend.  Have a great Friday, everyone!

12 comments:

  1. I'm a big fan of Incubus, but I never really liked this album. :\

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  2. Then you're going to love the post I make midafternoon.

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  3. This a really good review keep em coming

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  4. I knew this was coming today. But how can you say this is a mediocre album. I really thought you would have nothing but good things to say.

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  5. Watch for the track-by-track at 10p/12c. That's what it's for.

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  6. I remember my friend suggested this to me when it came out. I listened to it and thought the exact same thing you did!

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  7. My least favorite Incubus album. SCIENCE or Fungus Amongus fo sho.

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  8. Another fair review. They seemed on latter albums to make a couple of gems per album but never quite get the cohesiveness of the early albums

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  9. I'm a huge Incubus fan, but this album just seemed so... Mainstream. Between Earth to Bella and Love Hurts, I thought I was listening to a James Blunt album.

    I will agree that A Kiss To Send Us Off is the best song on that album, though. Sounds like classic Incubus.

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  10. 3/5? I'll pass. I have a strong feeling that this blog is going to make me feel very narrow about my musical tastes.

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  11. Man, I loved this album... I mean, it wasn't as good as S.C.I.E.N.C.E. but I thought every song on Light Grenades was GREAT. Some of them took a little getting used to but now the 2nd half of the CD is my favorite part. Other than Earth to Bella... I never liked those 2 songs much.

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  12. As a Tool fan, I'm fully aware of how music can grow on you, and there may come a time where I absolutely love Pendulous Threads. But this blog is current, so here's my current thoughts. I'm sure if it grows on me one day, I'll write some kind of retrospective post.

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