Review Summary: My sweet summer is gone.
With their third studio album, the aptly titled Sound of Change
, The Dirty Heads abandon their hip-hop-tinged reggae rock in favor for a poppier sound. While the transition into a more mainstream musical direction doesn’t necessarily correlate into diminishing quality, the conversion isn’t exactly smooth. Tracks such as “Burn Slow” and “Franco Eyed” feature rap guests, Tech N9ne and B-Real of Cypress Hill respectively, and both come off as generic hip-hop tunes that wouldn’t sound out of place on right-of-the-dial urban radio stations. At other points in the album, Sound of Change
utilizes pop ballads (“End of the World”) and obnoxious rap with a club-ready beat (“Medusa”). While prior albums brought the sound of lying in the sand of Caribbean beaches and lighting up a nice, fat joint, The Dirty Heads stray away from their signature sound and the result is a disjointed, bland, vapid mess. While some songs do utilize the reggae stroke, they’re hidden behind computer-manufactured beats and overly slick production. “Radio” is the lone highlight on Sound of Change
, as it sees the Californian group doing what they do best, making faux-authentic reggae rock to sit down, relax to, and knowing their core fanbase, maybe smoke some weed to. Although The Dirty Heads attempt to try something new, all they end up doing is creating an album that is as lazy, boring and uninspired as the music they try to emulate.