Nine albums and almost a quarter of a century into their career, that Papa Roach remain one of the most consistent bands rock music has to offer is no mean feat.
True to form, ‘Crooked Teeth’ sees the California quartet deliver another solid, sturdy collection of songs. Big on melody and driven by vocalist Jacoby Shaddix’s distinctive howl, the title track is tailor-made to be sung on both sides of the barrier, setting the tone for a record full of huge choruses and gritty hooks.
Embracing their rap-metal past more than on any album in 15 years, the likes of opener ‘Break The Fall’ and ‘My Medication’ are sure to elate long-time supporters, merging elements of both their distant and more recent pasts.
Naturally there are some ropey moments – the ill-advised electro-reggae of ‘Born For Greatness’ in particular – and the same old themes are present and correct. Yes, Jacoby has had a rough time; yes, he’s written a song about it (‘Help’); yes, it’s good. But if at this point in time the worst that can be said about Papa Roach is that they’re predictable, that’s an achievement.
‘Crooked Teeth’ won’t change the world, but it will sustain and reward a fanbase that never let them down and in turn have never been let down. And there’s nothing wrong with that.