Sharkey's debut album "Sharkey's Machine" features a unique hybrid of underground Hip Hop, electronica, alternative rock and R&B. As the founding member of The Crownsayers, Sharkey manages to combine all these various styles into one big pot of gumbo, thus making his debut album an original but erratic release.
With an overload of various styles, "Sharkey's Machine" will definitely feature a sound that every listener can appeal to. However, with such variety the album never really forms a concrete sound, leaving many of the attempts feeling out of place. The Hip Hop influenced tracks are definitely the albums highlights, as artists such as Cannibal Ox, Jean Grae & The Pharcyde make solid appearances. Can Ox's futuristic, cosmic sounds of "Fuzz" is the type of effort you would expect, duplicating that "Cold Vein" sound perfectly. While on the other hand Jean Grae's "Summer In The City" and The Pharcyde's "Snobird" showcase a different vibe than the one usually associated with each artist. Nevertheless, both succeed due to solid production from Sharkey himself.
Mixed in between these Hip Hop tracks are also a multitude of beautiful instrumental tracks. "Something's Got To Give" is a perfect summer time melody, while "If It Fits" and "Slo-Mo In The Grotto" follow in the footsteps of RJD2 with their variety and skillfulness. However, with an abundant amount of sounds, the electronica, rock and R&B efforts fail to blend with the rest of the album. The electronica sounds of "Song 20" & "Icewater" are both average attempts. As are the skateboard/punk raps of "Skateboarders Blues" & "Meltdown", both of which feature Zooks from The Spark. Also thrown in is the country sounds of "Little Cabin Song", the R&B influenced "Here We Are" and the alternative rock vibes of "A Typical Day In Sunny Washington, DC".
"Sharkey's Machine" is one big hodgepodge that has it's shining moments but also fails to stay consistent. It's a daunting task to ask anyone to mix together a variety of sounds the way Sharkey has, and unfortunately the end results showcase such a struggle.