This album plays like a strange train ride. It’s all build up at first– the excitement you have once you get on board and take your seat and you feel ready for wherever you’re going. It evokes those feelings that the near future will be either incredible or catastrophic. The pace and intensity pick up, slow down and make the necessary stops. Then it’s off again, with Casey Jones at the helm, hell-bent on getting to the destination. The people on this train run the gamut of humanity: from tidy, suited businessmen to sleeping, dirty hobos and massive scar-faced thugs who won’t break eye contact and keep playing with something in their jacket pockets. By the time you get to the end of the ride, you’re spent, your nerves are frayed and you’re feeling uneasily satisfied. The Crystal Method have been the conductors on these sort of trips for over twenty years, and they know how to expertly navigate what could easily be a ride into mediocrity.
The Crystal Method plays like a true album. There’s something cohesive that runs throughout it that connects the tracks in what resembles a logical manner, rather than just being a collection of singles that an artist had made that year. There are obvious influences from outside the EDM umbrella. Songs like “Jupiter Shift” and “Difference” reek of hardcore/punk roots. The rest of the album plays with all the different sounds EDM has to offer. The Crystal Method show their versatility with glitchy tracks, heavy dubstep tracks and melodic house/trance tracks sampling sounds seemingly from all over the universe.
Musically, The Crystal Method flex their production muscles by creating songs that can be just as subtle as they are bombastic. The lyrics, provided by the likes of LeAnn Rimes, Dia Frampton and Nick Thayer, are at times light, melodic and beautiful, and at others intense and aggressive. The builds and drops are not limited to the individual tracks, but when The Crystal Method is listened to from start to finish, there are highs and lows that give the album the kind movement that makes music worth listening to.