First review of the new year, let's do this shit.
I'm going to start off by saying thank you for reading this, and/or the others I have posted. I want to start doing these more often, so I'm going to be trying out a few new writing strategies. Instead of doing track-by-track reviews (which I do enjoy doing), I think I'll just type up a few paragraphs regarding what I feel about the album. That way, I can make these quicker, and have them feel more inviting to read. Of course, they'll be shorter, but I feel they'll be just as effective. Without further adieu, here's my review of †††'s self-titled release.
This album. This goddamn album, man. What a monster. ††† (pronounced "Crosses") is a Los Angeles band who formed in 2011, consisting of Chino Moreno (Deftones, Team Sleep), Shaun Lopez (Far), and Chuck Doom. What these guys are now is what Nine Inch Nails wish they could be. Combining industrial, electronic, and progressive rock into powerful, sexy, and hammering tracks, these guys are truly musicians.
Instrumentally, this album has a pretty powerful sound. From the haunting synths of "†his Is A †rick" to the stark beauty of "Nine†een Eigh†y Four", ††† have their work cutout from them. There's a lot of splashes of noises hidden within some tracks, sometimes adding to the experience, sometimes providing a snap back to reality as you get lost in the noise. The album is dominated by the synth leads from track to track, which, in their own regards, all have a very unique sound to them whilst keeping the integrity of the sound in mind.
Chino Moreno is known primarily as lyricist for creating many sexually charged, angry songs. This album is no exception. Each song can have two meanings to it, one open to interpretation and one regarding love (or the making of). You can hear in his voice, specifically in tracks like "Nine†een Nine†y Four" and "Bi†ches Brew," the sexuality and angst trapped within Moreno's voice. Not that you could expect anything much different from him, though. With lyrics like, "Very soon we'll be erased /Forget how to count tense we used / Then realize that, oh God / you were not aware that I was in love with you," (Nine†een Nine†y Four) however, it's impossible to complain.
Crosses' eponymous debut has few weak points, if any. Personally, I loved every track until the last three, which I would rate no lower than a 7/10 at the very least. Each song spotlights a different focus, with no consistent pattern to follow, with each proving the musicianship within the trio. No element is left out, while no element is pushed to the point of making a song seem purposed for it.
Overall, I'd say that Crosses' album is definitely one of the greatest albums released in 2014. The band has proven that their experiments with rock and electronica is not in vain, and that they can deliver a truly powerful and haunting sound without the need of over-glorifying any specific aspect.
Favorites: †his Is A †rick, Nine†een Nine†y Four, Bi†ches Brew
Least Favorites: †, Pruien†, Dea†h Bell