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Hot Hot Heat's latest offering screams, “We are unique, damn it!” With their desire to play multiple styles of music, make up words (“Implosionatic”), and spell ghettoized versions of real ones (“Buzinezz Az Uzual”), it is clear that rules and boundaries do not interest them. This chaotic approach makes Future Breeds a dicey proposition because while it results in some memorable songs, it also leads to some head-scratching dreck.

Off-rhythms and pop-rock hooks make “21@12” compulsively listenable, and the rapid-fire raps of the dance-punk tune “Implosionatic” are reminiscent of Aaron Peta's ironically catchy “Your Songs Have No Form.” Tracks like these — quirky but cohesive — work well, but when the band starts making noise simply because they can, the album loses momentum. The extended outro for “JFK's LSD” features a grating mishmash of electronic squiggles, while “Jedidiah” is filled with screams, shouts and a bizarre montage of sounds: children crying, a duck quacking, and a faucet running are among them. Artistic expression is great; throwing stuff together and seeing what sticks is not.

Future Breeds is an unusual but middling experience. Parts of it peak (“Nobody's Accusing You (of Having a Good Time)”), but a lot of it falls flat.

  • Album: Future Breeds (2010)
  • Artist: Hot Hot Heat
  • Label: Dine Alone
  • Songs: (1) YVR (2) 21@12 (3) Times a Thousand (4) Implosionatic (5) Goddess on the Prairie (6) Zero Results (7) Future Breeds (8) JFK's LSD (9) Jedidiah (10) Buzinezz Az Uzual (11) What Is Rational? (12) Nobody's Accusing You (of Having a Good Time)
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