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The Crystal Method

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Editors’ Notes

Delayed in part due to Scott Kirkland’s brain surgery, this self-titled release has an urgency and sense of celebration that’s also been the duo’s raison d’etre since 1997’s Vegas set them apart. Kirkland and Ken Jordan are dancefloor veterans for a reason; they know how to interpolate new sounds without discarding what fans love about them. Guest singers like Dia Frampton and LeAnn Rimes suggest a diva-pop accessibility that does make “Over It” and “Grace,” respectively, work considerably well as songs and not just tracks (though prepare for the remixes!). Found sounds, samples, elementally sequenced synths, and growling basslines still dominate their approach, but for a duo celebrating their 20th anniversary together, they’re still challenging themselves by working with the likes of Franky Perez (Scars on Broadway), Nick Thayer, Afrobeta, and mau5trap artist Le Castle Vania. Yet there’s still plenty of meat on the bone for the duo’s own works (“Emulator,” “110 to the 101," and “Jupiter Shift”) to shift from the clubs to outer space and back with little change in direction.

Customer Reviews

Evolution of TCM

Ignore the negative reviews of an entire album based off of one song. True fans know that "Emulator" was the first single released to fans outside of iTunes, and it's genuine TCM.

A welcome evolution

While it may be easy to say TCM are "selling out" or "turning into dubstep fad boys", I think a lot of people are failing to realize that dubstep (with all its faults) is a natural evolution of the breakbeat movement of the late '90s and mid-2000s. What I think TCM have done here is give the existence of dubstep a polite fatherly nod, pick up a few of its elements, and work it into what they've already been doing so well for years.

In short, it's great to see TCM back in their well-worn (but newly polished) saddle.

What happened to my boys.

What happened to TCM's sound? I picture Jordan and Kirkland bound and gagged to chairs, being forced to compose badly by an evil malfunctioning vacuum cleaner that is possessed by reverberating dub step devil hiccups.

The currently available track, "Over It," is more dub step vomit that is suitable for removing fillings and uninstalling people's sense of rhythm. Electronica and some of its pioneer artists, such as The Crystal Method, have drank the dub step Kool-Aid and it shows in this droll attempt to imitate a bad trend. I hope they go back to their roots, abandon dub step (or at least sanitize 99.4% of it) and I really hope the rest of the disc is better.

Biography

Formed: 1993 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Electronic

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

L.A.'s Crystal Method were referred to as America's answer to the Chemical Brothers. A dance-based electronic duo with a definite rock band feel, the comparison seemed appropriate, although it tended to erase what made the group distinct: a solid base in American hip-hop, rock, soul, and pop. Formed in 1993 by Ken Jordan and Scott Kirkland, Crystal Method was the longest-running stop in a string of projects that led them from their native Las Vegas (and some forgettable four-track stabs at vocal...
Full Bio
The Crystal Method, The Crystal Method
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