Review Summary: Does Incubus even want to be Incubus anymore?
I'm at a loss for words. I love Incubus, a lot actually. "Morning View" and "Make Yourself" are outstanding albums and some of my personal favorites, and ever since "Morning View" it would appear that the bands been on a downwards spiral leading us to their 8th album, "8". I was actually really excited after hearing the first two singles for the album, "Nimble Bastard" and "Glitterbomb" are passable tracks, in fact I'd argue they are the best ones on "8", everything else is very down-tempo and heavily inspired by the electronic music of today. "Love In A Time Of Surveillance" picks up the pace a bit but the song just isn't that great, for one I feel as if Brandon Boyd's vocals are at their lowest point, it sounds as if he has absolutely no interest or passion in what he's doing here, and it doesn't help that this is some of Incubus' worst songwriting. The 57 second joke track "When I Became A Man" is very out of place, as I mentioned this album is a bit more down-tempo and mellow but then suddenly this track comes on with really odd instrumental choices that I can't put my finger on, and honestly the most cringe-inducing lines on the entire album, "But I was just a sweet little boy/She showed me how to shower/And I took that shower/And that was the day I became a man".
This album overall just doesn't sound like Incubus at all to me, the last two tracks off "8" in particular, "Make No Sound In The Digital Forest" and "Throw Out The Map" do flow into each other really well I will give them that, and "Make No Sound In The Digital Forest" in particular is one of the better mellowed out tracks on the album, mostly because it feels very reminiscent of "Aqueous Transmission" from Morning View, and there's no vocals in it to drag it down really, it's a nice little tune. But then we get to "Throw Out The Map" which sounds like Fall Out Boy upon first listen. Like honestly if you just listened to an instrumental of it there's not a single way you can say it's Incubus, unlike with songs like "Pardon Me" off of Make Yourself, where the very distinct uses of the turntables made it instantly recognizable without the lyrics.
This isn't completely bad, again "Make No Sound In The Digital Forest" is a great tune, and the first two singles are passable tracks. But, really it's not that amazing and I don't think Incubus should release anymore music at this point, they couldn't put out another great album if they really tried, Make Yourself and Morning View are very much products of their time, and in 2017 there's just no place for another Incubus album.