May 19, 2009

Album review: CKY - Carver City

Carver City is the first release for CKY under Roadrunner Records and is a great offering to start the band’s term with the label. And it’s also a great start to their “reunion” after being apart for some time for personal reasons. The music is refreshing (more on this later) and the last release on Island Records, An Answer Can Be Found, just seemed a little out of character for the band. A change in scenery can make a world of a difference.

So what or where is Carver City exactly? It’s a fictional New Jersey town the band came up with as a theme for the album, a seaside town that represents inspirations of childhood nostalgia and memories. One such inspiration derives from a Deron Miller family getaway which becomes “The Boardwalk Body.” It’s an intriguing theme considering the songs derive from actual events.

The band seemed to have lost that skater rock, disdainful style they had (they were once on the Warped Tour and were then kicked off in true CKY fashion, mind you), and their third release, An Answer Can Be Found, is a testament to that. There was just something off about that album. The passion and poise weren’t there. It was a solid effort but not what the band’s following was probably looking for. But CKY have resurged with grandiosity for their fourth release, a follow-up which shatters all expectations.

Once an artist changes style or heads in another direction, it’s not common to see a return to old form, but CKY defies this logic. “Hellions On Parade” is the third part in the Hellview theme, preceded by “96 Quite Bitter Beings” and “Escape From Hellview.” Not bad company, eh? It’s also the first single, the first track, and the first sign of a triumphant return. Following suit, “Rats In The Infirmary” is another song reminiscent of Volume 1 with dark, perhaps even industrial tones. Further, “Imaginary Threats” and “A#1 Roller Rager” have the fuzzy, little riffs and melody found abundant in Infiltrate-Destroy-Rebuild.

Carver City is everything CKY has come to be, and it’s a breath of fresh air... and a relief!


Ryan said...

I used to really really like CKY, great sound. You think this is up to that standard Seth?

Seth said...

This is a cross between the first two albums, so if you like those then you're in luck. It might be a stretch if you only like Volume 1, though.