Album review: Garbage, "Not Your Kind of People"
Published: Friday, May 18, 2012
Updated: Monday, August 27, 2012 16:08
For months I had anticipated the new album from Garbage, one of the most eccentric alternative bands of the 1990’s. They went off the major record label’s teat.
They spent the better part of a year recording and mixing “Not Your Kind of People,” which was finally released online May 15. They created a Twitter handle (and they follow me!) and documented each step of creating and promoting the album.
“Not Your Kind of People,” their first album since 2005’s remarkable “Bleed Like Me,” is a good album, definitely better than many rock and alternative albums that are currently available. As a Garbage album, there is something missing.
Immediately after listening to “Not Your Kind of People,” I listened to their self-titled debut, which was released 17 years ago.
Halfway through the first track, “Supervixen,” I heard what is missing in the new album: the bitter and angry lyrics, the dark sensuality in the music, the top-notch production from Butch Vig (well he is still here), and the feeling that Shirley Manson knows what you’re going through. Garbage was an essential part of the soundtrack to my life back in high school. They spoke to me and others who didn’t fit into the mold, into the mainstream.
It is tough to find them or any other rock and alternative artists on the radio in this town, and the few options for them are less than rockin’. Garbage’s first single “Blood for Poppies,” one of the strongest tracks on the album, could be on The Mix (101.9 FM) but it would seem odd to have that song play in between Rihanna and Fun.
The new material has yet to be played on Radio DePaul, an outlet that is often the forefront in what’s new and cool in music.
There are some hints of their heyday in the tracks “Automatic Systematic Habit,” which opens the album strong and with the lyrics “Lies, lies, lies/You love those lies” and “Man on a Wire,” which sounds like an omitted track off “Version 2.0,” which is often considered her best work.
There is nothing groundbreaking about this record, which is fine according to Shirley Manson. “It’s not our job to reinvent the wheel,” she said in a recent interview. “That’s the playground of the young.”
After listening to their other albums, I listened to “Not Your Kind of People” again. It is starting to grow on me but I don’t think this will be a part of the soundtrack to my current life. Well, except “Automatic Systematic Habit” and “Man on a Wire.”
There is something in those songs that can get the adrenaline rushing.