Earlier in 2014, The Crystal Method released their self-titled fifth album, a mix between the classic electronica dance tracks and the currently popular electronic pieces with vocal accompaniment. Abiding by the shifts in mainstream music, where lyrically catchy electronic dance music tracks are prevailing amongst the general population, six of Crystal Method’s new eleven tracks feature various singers. The remaining five tracks keep with Crystal Method’s experimental, club music feel, including old-school synthesizer-based tuned. However, Crystal Method continues to evolve, incorporating increasingly popular trends in the electronic genre, as evident by the influence of bass in their songs and the prevalence of cohesive rhythms. Collaborating with heavy hitting singers, such as Dia Frampton and LeAnn Rimes, pushes The Crystal Method to draw attention to soulful tones from inorganic machines, mixing pop and catchy vocals with classic electronic and dubstep dance tunes. The mesh of the two creates a well done divide between relatable singer-songwriter feel and machine-made, attention-grabbing dance music that fans expect from the electronic duo.
The bands experimentation on the electronic scene is heavily seen in “Grace” featuring country-pop singer LeAnn Rimes. The track appeals to the mainstream as seen in their expanding dive into lyrically shaped, vocal-laced tracks. However, The Crystal Method maintains their signature style by including moving rhythms and seamless, smooth transitions in their composition.
The biggest single off the album , “Over It”, features Dia Frampton, most famously known as the runner up contestant on the hit show The Voice. The song works around Frampton’s vocals, respecting her individual, light, airy voice without using numerous voice modulation techniques as seen on other vocal tracks. The piece, however, is hardly a vocal accompaniment. The electronic music is the clear focus, including hard synths and interlaced rhythmic creations that mesh well with Framptom’s rising and falling pitches.
This new album is a strong effort by The Crystal Method to stay incorporated into an ever-changing, evolving field like electronic music. In a field that has no set foundations except to push the foundations, The Crystal Method’s self-titled album meshes both classical electronic techniques, calling back to a retro feel, while including newer, trendy and experimental vibes such as vocals and strong bass and drum use.
During the Sunset Music Festival, The Crystal Method will be teaming up with the festival through the grassroots organization for dance music, Electronic Music Alliance (EMA), largest non- profit of its kind co-founder by the band’s Ken Jordan. During the festival, EMA will encourage sustainability, health, and community within the dance music culture with their on site space called Planet SMF. Planet SMF will provide festival-goers with educational resources, a chill-out zone, and chances to win points for festival clean up and other volunteering advantages.
The Crystal Method’s fifth album can be found HERE
Key Tracks: Storm the Castle (feat. Le Castle Vania), Over it (feat. Dia Frampton), Dosimeter (feat. Nick Thayer)
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