Sound — 7
The band really went back to their older syle of island inspired music with this album. You won't hear as much distorted guitar riffs and rock hard solos, but more slow paced raggae jams. The band stated that they poured their own feelings and angst into the music which you can clearly hear on the tracks: "Wet Dreams" "Love 101" and "Ambition". The album was produced by Butthole Surfer's guitarist Paul Leary. The band commented on how having him as the main producer added to the flavor and sound acheived on the record.
Lyrics — 8
This particular Pepper album has very emotional lyrics. There is of course many songs with playful and humorous lyrics, which is typical of the band. Tracks such as: "Musical 69" and "Davey Jones Locker" are sure to please long time Pepper fans. As usual the singing is superbly on par with the musical style. There is impressive vocal range as well as strong emotion within the singing. The track "Blackout" showcases how even a lack of lyrics (aside from the phrase "Blackout!" and spoken word) can work with the music.
Overall Impression — 8
This is was a very stong effort by the band even though they strayed a little from their previous successful musical style. Casual Pepper fans may not enjoy the album as much, but die hard fans like myself will love it. The biggest complaint I did have with this record was that it only has 13 tracks. Alhough, "Musical 69" is as good a song as any the band has released and "The Phoenix" is a sure to be popular. The albums first single "Wet Dreams" also impressed me greatly. This record is sure to be spinning all summer for Pepper fans as well as receiving heavy play time during concerts. This would be a definite re-buy if lost or stolen as I haven't taken it out of my CD player since its release date.