Brandon Boyd
The Wild Trapeze


3.0
good

Review

by Mike Allen USER (107 Reviews)
July 25th, 2010 | 13 replies | 11,954 views


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Brandon Boyd's foray into solo territory is a pleasant listen, but is ultimately lacking.

7 of 8 thought this review was well written

Brandon Boyd is no stranger to change. As the front man of an alternative rock band that essentially reinvents themselves with each release, it would only be fitting for him to take on a completely disparate challenge in the form of a solo career. Needless to say, the renowned Incubus lead vocalist had been instrumental to the band’s evolving and autonomic nature throughout the 90’s and 00’s; utilizing vocal techniques that ranged from abrasive nu-metal rapping to pure singing. The latter represents the Brandon Boyd that was so prevalent on the band’s past two or three releases, serving as pertinent adaptations to the music even if it meant sacrificing a bit of innovation. Boyd had actually indicated following the release of Light Grenades that the band was reluctant of their earlier work, believing that they had taken a much more mature approach in recent time. This has been apparent with Incubus’ latest live performances, generally leaving songs from both S.C.I.E.N.C.E. and Fungus Amongus out of setlists. This transformation (although not necessarily a positive one), has made it possible for the Incubus lead singer to undertake a solo stint. Currently in 2010, Boyd has been situated in a circumstance akin to Eddie Vedder just a few years back; a fresh and divergent career move from a band in their decline. The conventional and erratic nature of Light Grenades has facilitated the need for such a adjustment, as we begin to expect less and less from a band that is capable of much more.

Boyd’s maturation and development into a predominantly clean vocalist has established him as one of the more relevant mainstream singers in recent memory, so it would only be fitting that his solo debut The Wild Trapeze, showcase this. Virtually every track is indicative of his wonderful singing voice; demonstrating his ability to climb up and down the latter with ease and evoke a profound sense of passion when necessary. Lead single “Runaway Train” conveys the aforementioned statements with flying colors, while serving as an infectious and accurate representation of the album. Unfortunately, much of The Wild Trapeze is predictable and one-dimensional, generally featuring an acoustic guitar and insipid backing instrumentation. The tandem of “Last Night A Passenger” and “All Ears Avow!” however, offer stark comparisons to the rest of the record. Both utilize a distorted and brooding atmosphere which contributes a bit of disposition to an otherwise uneventful release.

Even in Incubus’ finest moments, songwriting had never been Boyd’s forte, often disguised by the band’s novel instrumentation and his soaring vocals. The discrepancy here is that the focus on solely on Boyd, and therefore, relatively pedestrian songwriting is exposed as a much more formidable issue. Despite its pleasant nature, “Runaway Train” delineates The Wild Trapeze in this regard, taking a lyrical conduit that has been done millions of times before: “And I try so hard to get out of the way of that runaway train. Oh, how I do love the rain.”

Brandon Boyd’s solo debut is a rather uneventful release, but yet a hopeful one. The potential for greater things is obvious considering his tremendous talent as a vocalist, which will only be furthered by polished songwriting. His foray into a solo career may prove to be a brilliant move considering Incubus’ falling stock, but for now has both options to continue to build on his illustrious reputation.



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user ratings (51)
Chart.
3.5
great
other reviews of this album
Dunpeal (3)
This is an upbeat record, not overly happy, probably best suited for a drive down an ocean coastline...

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Comments:Add a Comment 
EVedder27
July 25th 2010



6088 Comments


Thought I'd get this done before I leave for Mexico tomorrow. Expect plenty of reviews when I get back

Blindsided
July 25th 2010



1871 Comments


Like 97-100?

EVedder27
July 25th 2010



6088 Comments


exactly

DoubtGin
July 25th 2010



6749 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

majorly disappointed by this;

great review though.. have a pos

Jethro42
July 25th 2010



12402 Comments


Happy holidays, and happy 100th to come!!
Great review, posd.


EVedder27
July 25th 2010



6088 Comments


Thanks guys.

I wouldn't say that I'm disappointed DoubtGin, considering this was pretty much what I was expecting.

Romulus
July 25th 2010



8423 Comments


I just returned from like three days without Sputnik and I already feel way behind on everything but I'm happy I caught this, great review

Dunpeal
July 25th 2010



3661 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0



good stuff man. pos'd

Digging: Pallbearer - Foundations of Burden

EVedder27
July 25th 2010



6088 Comments


I'll be gone for a week, so I'm sure I'll be missing a lot more.

Thanks guys

AnotherBrick
July 25th 2010



9770 Comments


damn dude i'm so fucking jealous that you're going on a trip. thinking about checking this out, but not sure now. regardless, have a fucking sweet trip

Nagrarok
July 26th 2010



8197 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I pretty much agree with everything you wrote here. Looking forward to your 100th.

StagnantWords
October 15th 2012



318 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

A night without cars is fantastic. Still a regular on my playlists.

mysticrecords
April 30th 2014



31 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

im still listening to this 4 years later, brilliant.



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