Incubus is a band that I cannot live without and their fifth release, “A Crow Left of the Murder,” does not change my opinion. Their unique sound once again shines through even with the addition of new bassist Ben Kenney, formerly of The Roots.
The new album is explorative, but all their albums seem to possess some quality of exploration. While some tracks are reminders of Incubus’ past releases, it definitely does not have the funky, drug-riddled sounds of “Fungus Amongus” or the heavier rock found in “S.C.I.E.N.C.E.”
I thought that their albums could not get any mellower after “Morning View,” but “A Crow Left of the Murder” is the band’s smoothest album yet.
The album starts off with the first single, “Megalomaniac,” a song that hardly introduces the rest of the album. It is the heaviest track and one of the few that uses the guitar distortions that Incubus is known for. DJ Kilmore cranks out more electric sounds as opposed to the scratching heard on previous Incubus records.
The title track is one of the best on the album for its lyrics and overall rhythm. Lead singer and songwriter Brandon Boyd delivers cutting-edge lyrics that are usually outbursts against social norms or politics.
Some of his lyrics tend to be too deep or drug-induced to understand. However, the music gives a good idea of the meanings. “Sick Sad Little World” has classic, Incubus-style passion to express true emotions, and the lyrics in “Agoraphobia” are brilliant.
Brandon’s voice is as beautiful as ever on this album. He hits some high notes that we are not used to hearing but he pulls them off. “Here in my Room” is a wonderful love-inspired track where Brandon really gets to show off his voice.
The poetic lyrics fit the melody of the music and the song exhibits how much the band has matured. Incubus started up thirteen years ago when the members were still in high school, so each album progressively shows a much more experienced group.
Incubus is no doubt one of the most talented bands in the industry. They are “real.” They express what is on their minds with their own lyrics. There are few bands out there that sound similar to Incubus. Their depth and talent shine through on this album, especially when played along with their first four releases. I was anxiously awaiting the release of “A Crow Left of the Murder,” and I was far from let down.
“A Crow Left of the Murder” is brilliant in its ability to be a great all-around album. It is hard to believe that it took Incubus only two months to create. It is the type of album that is good for everything; whether going to a party or being upset or in love.
There is not just a single, overall theme. It is difficult to rate any Incubus album as “the best” since each has such a different result. “A Crow Left of the Murder” is, however, a great accomplishment for the band.
Besides, the limited edition album comes with a bonus DVD, which is great for fans. Pick up a copy – it does not take long to get hooked!
Key Tracks – “A Crow Left of the Murder” “Agoraphobia” “Talk Show on Mute” “Sick Sad Little World” “Here in my Room.”