I’m not proud to admit this, but here goes: I was a teenage Limp Bizkit fan. I can try to justify it – it was 1999! Everybody but Mos Def loved them! And I was done with them by the time I turned 14! So it was really only a year at best! And like I still listened to good music like the Beatles and Tom Petty and Deftones! But I try to avoid revisionist history as best I can. Simply put, eighth grade me was a wiener. I overcame it to become a gloriously emo wiener. Go me.
I’ve been rethinking my childhood lately, partially thanks to repeat viewings of Mortal Kombat, X-Men, and Mystery Science Theater 3000, but also thanks in small part to Thought Crime’s EP, The End of the Beginning. The band doesn’t sound like Limp Bizkit. But since they do bear the relatively more “family friendly” rap-rock sound of Linkin Park and 311, Thought Crime does send me back about a decade in time. While a couple of the EP’s songs recall radio rock a la Hoobastank, the majority of the collection dips into hip-hop territory. That means plenty of cheesy rapping, as evidenced on jarring tunes like “Inner Peace” and “Life That I’m Living.”
To a certain extent, these nu-metal revivalists succeed by avoiding the genre’s most well-known downfall, mook-tastic aggression. The guitar sound isn’t particularly prominent or crunchy. This isn’t exactly the soundtrack to violence. Thought Crime aims for more of a unity theme in spite of depressing lyrics – hence the rap-rock fusion. But while their sound is inoffensive, it’s also kind of boring. While “Waiting for the Day” admittedly features a catchy chorus, The End of the Beginning is still a decade late and a couple singles short. If I wanted a real nostalgia trip, I’d rather spin Lostprophets’ Thefakesoundofprogress or Faith No More’s Introduce Yourself.