Hailing from a country whereby electronica thrives beneath the surface in an enigmatically brilliant scene, you're aware of what does and what doesn't qualify as good material. Computers, samplers and keyboards all help conjure these soundscapes, which seem to wrap around fight scenes in movies and coat music video's to perfection. The Crystal Method, comprised of Ken Jordan and Scott Kirkland are seasoned veterans at the more commercially viable end of this musical genre.
Having released widely praised material, I had high hopes for "Legion Of Boom." However, the best electronica is that which envelops you at any volume. At intense levels, electronica is undeniably great. The bass and trickling synths massage you so smoothly that it's hard not to enjoy them. But played at reasonable levels, some of the material is severely lacking. Unfortunately, that's a truth expressed here. Rahzel (a beatboxer/rapper I enjoy live) isn't as always impressive on record. "The American Way" which features him, includes sub-par verses over a mechanically fused sound. His beat-boxing ad-libs make the track harder to endure - the whole robot feel doesn't do it for me. "Realizer" is another good example of track that we've heard before on many an electronic release. The distortion/repetition of a simple sample over a funky, up-tempo beat provides a great backdrop, but not enough draw for me to opt to listen to it.
The funk that Crystal Method can assemble is present though. "Broken Glass," features a simple sample, which feels familiar to most but it's the backdrop behind it where you realize why the duo are so highly regarded. The complicated beat serves its purpose behind powerful guitar riffs. "Starting Over" pulls us into the album with subtle sounding chiming followed by bass heavy drumbeats and serves as one of "Legion of Boom"s better tracks.
Overall, "Legion of Boom" is enjoyable. But, it fails to standout from what most mainstream electronica has to offer.