Tee shirts? And is that eye makeup? Crazy Town shifts gears.
Tee shirts? And is that eye makeup? Crazy Town shifts gears.

Crazy Town

Mook rock may now have its own Smash Mouth a marginal band armed with buffalo-butt riffs and urban attitude that somehow outlives one-hit wonder and sticks to the roof of radio's mouth like peanut butter. Crazy Town burst into modern-rock playlist permanence two years ago with "Butterfly," catchier than any other post-Limp Bizkit hip-hop/rock marriage, as faithful to the "hip-hop and you don't stop" aesthetic as it was to the "that girl put my tender heart in a blender" vibe. The song also became a smash on MTV, thanks in part to the studly, bad-ass image of singer and rapper Shifty Shellshock, an earnest recovering drug addict with short blond spikes and buff, tattooed arms.

Don't look now, but Crazy Town is now racing up rock charts again, and this time they come armed with what?! melody. "Drowning" is yet another breakup song, but this time, the guitars are bombastic, not minimal; the drums are real and not programmed; and the vocals are overdubbed and layered. Here's the band's publicity spiel on the song: "The band has developed a sonic palette that retains the key elements of its signature sound . . . while revealing an ever-broadening range of sophisticated songcraft and high-combustion rock energy." Here's making things simpler than that garbage: Who knew the mighty Incubus would ever attract decent competition from these wanna-be b-boys, or that Hoobastank could ever serve as such an inspiration?


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