Sound — 8
CKY almost didn't make it long enough to allow Carver City see the light of day. Internal issues plagued the writing and recording process and caused the band to put itself on hiatus, but that's all polluted water under the bridge and Carver City was eventually completed and is now upon us and looking forward is really all that matters. Carver City is one of those albums that is nearly impossible to classify; it's certainly not metal, yet metalheads are fans of the band. It's not alternative, in the traditional sense, but it's not middle-of-the-road radio rock, either. Perhaps their enigma status is to CKY's credit, even if they aren't doing it on purpose. Album opener Hellions on Parade is a chunky, guitar-launched rocker, while A#1 Roller Rager vacillates between broody and raging. There's a lot of different twists and turns, in terms of mood and tempo, on Carver City, which prevents the listener from ever getting bored or from knowing what's going to come next.
Lyrics — 8
Carver City is a concept album concerning a dark, summer vacation town where everything isn't what it seems. The band certainly takes the term and the idea of a concept album quite literally in the detailed lyrics, which the diehards will spend time pouring over to pull some meaning and understanding of the linking factors and the concept itself. And She Never Returned and The Boardwalk Body function as stories moreso than just your average songs, with lots of little details that will peak the listeners' interest. The concept is enticing enough to kidnap your attention and the subsequent execution of the stories will hold it, since the concept isn't quite so esoteric or hard to grasp. After all, it's a rock album, isn't it? CKY make the concept album appealing to the thinking man and the average Joe.
Overall Impression — 8
Carver City won't do much to clear up some of the anomalies that remain present in CKY and their music. There's a mingling of hard rock and alternative rock on most of the songs and that allows the band to appeal to a wide, diverse cross-section of subversive rockers and skate punks who want something new, different and exciting than what's currently blasting on the radio. It's not as polarizing as it may seem, since CKY appear to attract a fair amount of haters to coincide with their over-the-top, incredibly zealot fans. Overall, left-of-center rock is the beating heart of Carver City.