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Papa Roach - Crooked Teeth album review

It’s like the past 17 years never happened

Cover art for Papa Roach - Crooked Teeth album

Though a stopped clock is guaranteed to tell the time correctly twice a day, the suspicion lingers that Papa Roach’s was smashed to bits sometime around the turn of the century. Moreover, thanks to the encouragement of long-term fans and producers Nicholas ‘RAS’ Furlong and Colin Brittain, Papa Roach have elected to return to the sound of their breakthrough album, Infest, with an emphasis on Jacoby Shaddix’s rapping.

And therein lies the problem. As rap and hip-hop constantly move forward to explore new techniques, sounds and meaning within ever-expanding boundaries, here Papa Roach sound less like a band returning to their roots and instead one stuck inside a time loop from which they can’t escape.

Characterised by much petulance and feet stamping, the whole thing is summed up by Sunrise Trailer Park’s key line, ‘I’m still haunted by the best years of my life.’ So are we.

Julian Marszalek is the former Reviews Editor of The Blues Magazine. He has written about music for Music365, Yahoo! Music, The Quietus, The Guardian, NME and Shindig! among many others. As the Deputy Online News Editor at Xfm he revealed exclusively that Nick Cave’s second novel was on the way. During his two-decade career, he’s interviewed the likes of Keith Richards, Jimmy Page and Ozzy Osbourne, and has been ranted at by John Lydon. He’s also in the select group of music journalists to have actually got on with Lou Reed. Marszalek taught music journalism at Middlesex University and co-ran the genre-fluid Stow Festival in Walthamstow for six years.