An album that’s sure to see fans of Papa Roach crack a smile.
Label: Eleven Seven Music
Released: 19th May 2017
‘Crooked Teeth’ is a record which proves that Papa Roach have still got something to offer in 2017. Their early-noughties heydeys may be behind them, but Jacoby Shaddix and co.’s ninth full-length possesses enough immediacy to ensure they can still cut it in the present day. Opener ‘Break the Fall’ is a bold, assured start to proceedings, complete with a great hulking chorus, while ‘American Dream’ is similarly confident and convincing.
There’s plenty more in terms of assertive songwriting, too: ‘Born for Greatness’ has all the hallmarks of a call to arms anthem, Skylar Grey collaboration ‘Periscope’ is a potent helping of pop goodness, and Machine Gun Kelly lends his talents to further strengthen the emotional heft of ‘Sunrise Trailer Park’. The latter is probably the most poignant song on ‘Crooked Teeth’, featuring lyrics like “I knew that I was ready to straighten up because my best friend died/I didn’t want to carry on living that life.” It’s sombre yet powerful stuff; the yin to the yang of mega-hit ‘Last Resort’.
Although this is by no means a perfect or groundbreaking record; after all, this nu-metal formula is one which has been done to death. Cuts like ‘Traumatic’ have nothing fresh to offer the listener, and by the time closing track ‘None of the Above’ rings out, it’s all become rather pedestrian and predictable. There’s an admirable degree of bolshiness on this record, but this in your face style doesn’t mask the fact that the California natives haven’t done anything particularly unique here.
‘Crooked Teeth’ is nothing special, but it’s a perfectly functional and often fun album, and it’s one that’s sure to see fans of Papa Roach crack a smile. Jake Richardson