Music Review – Silversun Pickups “Neck in the Woods”

Silversun Pickups members are:

Brian Aubert – Vocals, guitar

Nikki Monninger – Bass

Christopher Guanlao – Drums

Joe Lester – Keyboards

Silversun Pickups - Neck in the Woods

Silversun Pickups – Neck in the Woods

After great songs like “Panic Switch”, “Lazy Eye”, and “The Royal We” I was looking forward to the new album by the Silversun Pickups, titled Neck in the Woods.

Brian Aubert’s vocals are eerily similar to Billy Corgan from Smashing Pumpkins and I think that is an albatross they will never be able to break from, and maybe previous guitar dominant rockers drew even more similiarities.  But the direction they have gone in on this record seems to have put the guitar in the background in favor of large synthesizers and a large orchestrated sound, such as on “Bloody Mary (Nerve Endings)”.  No one would ever define their earlier work as “raw”, but this album seems far more produced and a lost less rock oriented.  There are a couple of songs that promised to take off, such as “Mean Spirited” but just never really got there, instead playing it safe and never delivering that head nodding chorus.

The positives of the album are that Guanlao’s drums are still prominent and have taken on more complex rhythms, much like Kid A or In Rainbows from Radiohead.  Songs such as “Gun-Shy Sunshine” does offer more complex chords and rhythms but never just let loose.

If it was the desire of Brian and the band to scale back from a more rocking sound, they have accomplished their task.  I just wonder if Neck in the Woods is a progression that Silversun Pickups fans want.

Silversun Pickups – “Bloody Mary (Nerve Endings)”


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