It seems Garbage has contracted a massive case of advanced schizophrenia.
The band's third LP release, Beautiful Garbage, runs amok. Garbage obviously couldn't choose just one genre or focus, so the band experiments and incorporates every possible option.
But the result is confusing. For all the ground the album covers, there is no transition -- a distinct discontinuity separates the songs that contradict the band's former self. The album opens with the usual Garbage flair with "Shut Your Mouth," but such familiarity disappears with "Androgyny," the second track, which sounds suspiciously like Nelly Furtado.
What gives? This musical resemblance to other artists, although characteristic of the Curve-inspired Garbage, was never truly showcased until now. "Nobody Loves You," not only sounds like Portishead but also paraphrases one of its song titles, "Nobody Loves Me." "Untouchable" could just be a Britney Spears permutation with a tiny bit of angst and actual lyrical prowess added.
Even the Smashing Pumpkins get a nod. "Parade" echoes the flowing, unpolished guitar work of vintage Pumpkins, while "So Like A Rose" holds a remarkable resemblance to tunes such as "Porcelina" from Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness.
But all the overt references aren't really necessary, and their presence is somewhat dismaying --
To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.