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(hed) pe

Back 2 Base X

Format: CD   Release Date: 06/06/2006
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The album starts off quietly enough, a bit more somber than most (hed) pe records with lead vocalist Jahred, and things are more introspective than usual with the band. With the album's opener, "Listen," Jahred abandons the raunch that was so abundant in Only in Amerika, and in its place gives his perspective on the current state of world political affairs, with the result sounding more like former Rage Against the Machine frontman Zack de la Rocha than his own usual venomous rap-metal delivery. This anomaly is just that, as the rest of the band brings back the crunchy, detuned guitar licks and vicious percussion that are part thrash, part hip-hop. But Back 2 Base X suffers from the same problems as Amerika: it tries to be conceptual in thought à la Tool and vicious in its political commentary à la Fugazi or System of a Down, but somehow falls short by sounding like an angry stoner on a soapbox. It won't win any new fans, but existing fans of (hed) pe's work won't be turning their backs away from the band in anger anytime soon, either. ~ Rob Theakston, Rovi

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