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A Crow Left of the Murder...

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Album Review

At the beginning of their career, Incubus was rightly lumped in with the legions of post-Korn alt metal/rap-rock bands swarming America in the latter days of the 20th century. But by their third album, 1999's Make Yourself, they had separated from the pack, as indicated by the presence of producer Scott Litt, best-known for his work with R.E.M.. It signaled that the band was serious, and they began expanding their rap-metal template on that album and its follow-up, 2001's Morning View, completing their transition from juvenelia to maturity with 2003's Crow Left of the Murder. Switching from Litt to producer Brendan O'Brien, a man who has been with Pearl Jam longer than any of their drummers, Incubus has opted for a clean, crisp yet heavy sound which allows them to aggressively switch from crunching metallic riffs to jazzy prog interludes. It's an expansive musical vision charged with some righteous anger; although vocalist Brandon Boyd doesn't write explicit protests, there sure are enough allusions to social turbulence to make this the first politically aware alt metal album in many a year. This maturation is even more evident in the music, how the band actually swings on "Zee Deveel," or how guitarist Michael Einzinger's jazz-influenced solos seem both carefully constructed and casually tossed off, or how Boyd's voice shifts from song to song (or during a song, as on the opening "Megalomaniac," which sounds like a bizarre blend of Mr. Mister's Richard Page and John Lydon). All this maturation does mean that Incubus may shed some older fans, since the naked ambitions on this record are far removed from the earnest, angst-ridden earlier records, but so be it — A Crow Left of the Murder... is far more interesting than any of their other records, or their peers'. At times, they may stretch themselves a little too far here, but the ambition is admirable and the achievements are tangible — a real breakthrough for the band. [A Crow Left of the Murder was also released in a limited-edition set with a bonus DVD containing a 26-minute documentary featuring footage from the band's Lollapalooza and Bridge Benefit performances, and of Boyd's injury.]

Customer Reviews

Incubus

Incubus at their best. A very high quality album.

So good!

This is one of those albums that needs to be listened to a few times so the songs can grow on you. I wasn't really impressed when I listened to it the first time, which made me sad because I absolutely love Incubus. So I gave it another chance and it's now one of my favorite albums ever. All of the songs are great but the best ones, in my opinion, are Here in my Room (gives me chills), Beware! Criminal, Megalomaniac, Agoraphobia, and Sick Sad Little World. Enjoy!

Biography

Formed: 1991 in Calabasas, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Incubus became one of the most popular alt-metal bands of the new millennium, setting themselves apart from a crowded field with a tireless touring ethic and a broad musical palette. Formed in 1991 in the San Fernando Valley suburb of Calabasas, California, the band's early lineup was comprised of tenth-grade classmates Brandon Boyd (vocals, percussion), Mike Einziger (guitar), Alex Katunich (aka Dirk Lance; bass), and José Pasillas (drums). Their early funk-metal sound was heavily influenced by...
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A Crow Left of the Murder..., Incubus
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