October 9, 2008

Gym Class Heroes: The Quilt

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On The Quilt, their fourth full-length album, Gym Class Heroes are a study in contradiction, blending thick hip-hop beats with surprisingly catchy pop-rock guitar riffs. Although the beginning tracks include some painfully awkward rhyme choices (e.g. “Drnk Txt Rmeo”), they’re quickly followed by the tongue-in-cheek “Peace Sign/Index Down” and the strangely touching “Like Father, Like Son (Papa’s Song).” The strongest track by far, however, is “Live a Little,” in which guitarist Disashi Lumumba-Kasongo takes over the vocals. The result is perhaps what Gym Class was aiming for all along — an ultimately badass salute to the defiance of genre. The album’s notable weak spots are in the sickly-sweet pseudo-ballad “Live Forever (Fly With Me),” and the PG-rated seduction song “Kissin’ Ears.” Ultimately, if you can get past some of McCoy’s more misogynistic turns of phrase, it’s a great listen for your morning hike up the Slope.