A Perfect Circle

A Perfect Circle’s Emotive (or, as the sleeve insists, eMOTIVe) is the angriest chill-out album since Nine Inch Nails’ The Downward Spiral. Inspired by current events, this onetime side project from Tool frontman Maynard James Keenan covers classic songs of uprising, greed and protest in a relatively detached manner. Black Flag’s “Gimmie Gimmie Gimmie” is a lively music-box waltz powered by Keenan’s froth-spewing snarl. Meanwhile, “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love, and Understanding” (made famous by Elvis Costello) is downgraded from indictment to rhetorical question, as is Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Goin’ On.” Fear’s “Let’s Have a War” gets closer to the heart of the matter, hinting at a military-industrial complex and expendable demographics. Subversive typo-graphy notwithstanding, Emotive creates an ominous mood of menacing quiet, combining string arrangements, electro beats and piano loops into a coherent down-tempo disc. Though many of the tracks are unplugged, this is A Perfect Circle’s most electric effort to date.

Categories: Music