First Appeared at The Music Box, May 2004, Volume 11, #5
Written by John Metzger
As long as there is teen angst, there will always be hard-driving rock ’n‘ roll, though the line that separates the good from the bad has grown into a Grand Canyon-sized gap. As with everything that achieves some semblance of popularity, the creative process ebbs and flows in diametric opposition to the size of a given audience. In short, the bigger the band and the bigger the genre, the more watered-down the music becomes, largely because artists who are willing to play the game trade innovation for a greater slice of the financial pie, with each group trying to sound like the next rather than taking the risk necessary for standing as its own unique entity.
For what it’s worth, Lostprophets’ second outing Start Something demonstrates that the band has achieved at least some level of growth and maturity, though its music still largely sounds contrived. There are moments when the group viciously thrashes its way through a riff with vigorous rage, but more often than not, it settles into a middle ground inhabited by pop-heavy hooks and sing-along choruses. That’s not inherently a bad thing, but the way that Lostprophets merges together the two disparate sides of its formula feels wholly generic, as if the songs were crafted with throngs of fist-pumping fans and corporate radio playlists in mind. Though the ensemble occasionally stumbles upon an idea that works, it never is able to maintain that momentum throughout an entire track. As a result, instead of delivering something on par with Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, or Red Hot Chili Peppers, it unleashes an avalanche of cliché-riddled tunes drawn from the same tired blueprints utilized by Linkin Park, Good Charlotte, Bush, and Creed.
Start Something is available from Barnes & Noble.
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2004 The Music Box