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2/24 KUMD Album Reviews: The Crystal Method


PLUR: Peace, Love, Unity, and Respect are not the only things The Crystal Method duo deserves after years of making delicious electronic, big beat, synth music. Coming out with their overdue album, The Crystal Method have taken electronic music to a new level.By Liza Demyanov

Members Scott Kirkland and Ken Jordan have been creating some of the best big beat/breakbeat techno music since the start of their collaboration in 1993. Entering the early 90's rave scene, Kirkland and Jordan were enthralled with L.A's underground club culture, and began creating music based off their experiences, creating some gnarly 70's funk, dance-based tracks. Since then, it has been a battle of being taken seriously as an electronica duo; with an exuberant amount of live performances and constant radio and club exposure, the hard work paid off in 1996, when they were signed by Outpost Recordings. They have since managed to record nine albums and build their own state-of -the art recording studio, Crystalwerks, where their album Divided by Night was recorded.

Although the Crystal Method are veterans of the EDM community, making this a self-titled album gave them a bit more of a contemporary edge to rise over fellow techno artists. Throughout their years of making sweet dance music, this duo kept their rivals in their rearview mirror as they took over the ravers, building enough of a following to make this a fan-funded album.

Clearly the Crystal Method have embraced their rightful place as leading techno artists in the EDM community, and their growth has certainly paid off on the new album. The opener, "Emulator," blows the doors wide open, with dubby, clubby synthesizers rising over the classic four-on-the-floor beat. Many tracks use guest features perfectly, with songs like "Over It (feat Dia Frampton)" and "Difference (feat Franky Perez)" making great use of vocal hooks and the track "Storm the Castle (feat. Le Castle Vania)" showcasing both Crystal Method's and Le Castle Vania's ear for beats, electronic samples and drops. All in all the tracks are energetic, hypnotic, and definitely some of the best rave music out there right now.

Recommended Tracks:
Track 1: Emulator
Track 2: Over It (Feat. Dia Frampton)
Track 3: Sling the Decks
Track 4: Storm the Castle (Feat. Le Castle Vania)
Track 6: Jupiter Shift
Track 9: Difference (Feat. Franky Perez)

The Chemical Brothers, Fluke, Fatboy Slim, Hyper, Lunatic Calm, Justice