The Road Less Traveled
311 have always been synonymous with their own crafty blend of rap, rock, and even reggae with an energy that electrifies fans of every genre. That being said, this Omaha based five-some have created an alarmingly dedicated worldwide fan base, without losing much artistic direction in their storied 11 plus year career. And while their earlier albums such as their 1995’s self-titled “blue album” were mainly rock driven, the band has infused acoustic and funk elements into their later work. Evolver, their new self-described “concept album,” is a perfect example of the evolution of 311’s current sound.Few groups are consistently solid from album to album without giving way to current musical trends. 311 prove they are one of the few with Evolver. Infectious grooves, pounding guitars, and downbeat tempos all intertwine with vocalists Nick Hexum and S.A. Martinez’s silky smooth voices to make a solid album from start to finish. One song stands out in particular, “Beyond the Gray Sky,” where the bands reggae side shines through. All in all, 311 manage to once again put together a musically diverse and complex piece of work, and perhaps most importantly letting evolution shape their music, rather than corporate trends.