Red Hot Chili Peppers
I'm With You


3.0
good

Review

by Cam EMERITUS
August 31st, 2011 | 455 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The Chili Peppers release another album. Yeah.

For all intents and purposes, I’m With You probably shouldn’t even exist. Even die-hard fans must have been skeptical of an iteration of the Red Hot Chili Peppers without John Frusciante, the band’s long-time guitarist and an accomplished singer/songwriter in his own right. For the past decade or so, Frusciante’s been the one sign of life from this rapidly-aging band, to the point where it’s hard to imagine By the Way or Stadium Arcadium being halfway listenable without his considerable input.

Yet, as badly as this bodes for the Chili Peppers, I’m With You is still surprisingly solid, featuring some of the band’s catchiest songs to date. However, it doesn’t exactly make case for the band to continue onwards, either. There’s little to no progression to be found here; the Chili Peppers spend the entirety of the album recapitulating their distinct but boilerplate sound, treading comfortably, spitting out one mid-tempo funk-rock song after another. There literally isn’t a song here that doesn’t sound like it was recorded during the latter years of the Frusciante era.

So, essentially, the remaining Chili Peppers and new guitarist Josh Klinghoffer have perfected duplicating themselves circa-2006. And that’s fine. Because, while I was and still am disappointed that I’m With You is a rehash, I do still enjoy listening to Stadium Arcadium from time to time, and I thusly enjoy listening to this (if less so). Songs like “Brandon’s Death Song” and “Police Station” are catchy enough, progressing from relatively subdued, acoustically-led verses to rousing, anthemic choruses. Meanwhile, “Look Around” and “Goodbye Hooray” are funky and fun, as is the driving and irresistibly infectious “Did I Let You Know,” complete with “Hump de Bump”-esque trumpet solos and Klinghoffer doing a hell of a job mimicking Frusciante’s signature falsetto harmonies.

So, yeah, I like listening to this album a bit. But this is strictly as a long-time Chili Peppers fan. If you already hate the band, I’m With You won’t change your mind: vocalist Anthony Keidis’s lyrics, always a sticking point, are as inane as ever, and the instrumentation is still rather kitschy and self-serving, especially concerning Flea’s hyperactive bass playing.

But, at this point, all that doesn’t really bother me. And what I guess I’m trying to say is that if all that doesn’t bother you either, then I’m With You’s worth picking up. For while it doesn’t stake any new ground or fix any old flaws, it sure doesn’t create any new ones, and it is certainly fun to listen to. And I guess that’s all that matters.

And while I may appreciate this album despite some of its fundamental flaws, I’m still not exactly clamoring for another Chili Peppers record. As stated before, I’m With You doesn’t suggest a future for the band: instead, it showcases one stuck in the mud, capable of churning its wheels but not moving forward. The Red Hot Chili Peppers need to end, plain and simple. Maybe get Keidis to release some solo records, or maybe someone can get a movie made where drummer Chad Smith and Will Ferrell play actual brothers. That’s something I could get a little more excited for.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
robertsona
Staff Reviewer
August 31st 2011


15063 Comments


negged shit is tight 10.0 best new red hot chili peppers album

Acanthus
August 31st 2011


9543 Comments


Saw this and thought it was a re-release of Cyanotic's The Medication Generation, sadly I was mistaken.

Fort23
August 31st 2011


2479 Comments


summary is a win

MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
August 31st 2011


4507 Comments


Anthony Killdis

thebhoy
Emeritus
August 31st 2011


4461 Comments


the one song I heard on the radio, at least the verse, was an identical melody to a Manic Street Preachers song (44 lbs I think?)

G3N3R1C
August 31st 2011


1945 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

i like it n stuf

Yuma310
August 31st 2011


1656 Comments


may get this album

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
August 31st 2011


10353 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Good review. I feel like some songs are just mediocre, which bothers me :/ considering these guys got me into music and whatnot

Btw, Look Around is catchy as hell.

Polymath
August 31st 2011


3836 Comments


Yeah........

aok
August 31st 2011


4447 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Even die-hard fans must have been skeptical of an iteration of the Red Hot Chili Peppers without John Frusciante


i actually like this one more than by the way. more of a return to flea driven tracks and sometimes i hear kiedis rapping instead of singing, which i appreciate. early chili peppers (uplift mofo - bssm) is still the best though imo

Intheayer
August 31st 2011


79 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Know what i call reviews like these?
Wrong.

toxin.
August 31st 2011


12764 Comments


Good review. This really reeks of mediocrity

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
August 31st 2011


10353 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

"Know what i call reviews like these?
Wrong."

Album Rating: 3.5

...

Zuver87
August 31st 2011


47 Comments


not bad, but i wish josh would not try to emulate john as much.

PistolPete
August 31st 2011


3639 Comments


"Saw this and thought it was a re-release of Cyanotic's The Medication Generation, sadly I was mistaken."

Infinitely better album than this will be, I wish a re-release for that came out.

Digging: Skyharbor - Guiding Lights

JWT155
August 31st 2011


9314 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Album definitely has more funk then any of their other records the past decade or so.

aok
August 31st 2011


4447 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

not bad, but i wish josh would not try to emulate john as much.


kiedis is pretty overbearing whenever a guitarist changes. in mother's milk, john was pretty much emulating hillel even though he was even more talented so klinghoffer was probly a bit gunshy to show off. he'd have to drive the next LP though for it to really be something special

jayfatha
August 31st 2011


2882 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Most meh album they've ever released

LeftyStyley
August 31st 2011


44 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Ya know, it's not that absence of Frusciante that bothers me but more the over abundance of Flea. Klinghoffer get's lost in the mix sometimes and it turns songs that could be really solid into something bland and mediocre.

telebyrd
August 31st 2011


869 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

I deleted "Factory of Faith", "Annie Wants A Baby", "Look Around", "Happiness Loves Company", and the last three tracks.

I like the album better now.



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