The power of Jane's Addiction is undiminished by Strays (this is still a band creating music unlike any other artist), but the imagination, bravado, and songwriting smarts apparent from previous classics is sadly missing.
An ambitious, exuberant effort that moves through hard-rock cave stomps into swaggering funk and loopy folk, ''Strays'' sounds like the work of a committed band intent on hanging around longer than the current Lollapalooza life span.
Perhaps a sign of the group's growth as artists, perhaps merely a hint of the changing times, Strays is an expertly crafted rock album, noticeably lacking much of Jane's earlier alternative sensibilities.
Strays masterfully re-creates the surface of Jane's Addiction's sound, but in the process neglects to capture the band's vulnerability, its many idiosyncrasies, or even the all-important sense that Farrell has much left to say.
I made the mistake in making this my introduction to Jane's Addiction. Not nearly as good as Nothing's Shocking and Ritual de lo Habitual. It does have its moments with Just Because and Superhero.…Full Review »