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Really Poppy, Yet Kinda Trip-Hoppy

Sneaker Pimps
Becoming X

In the past year and a half, there have been a lot of groups come out that fall into the trip-hop category. Out of everyone, the Sneaker Pimps have probably found the most mainstream success. This is mainly due to their fairly radio-friendly album and their ability to work pop sensibility into a genre that found its roots (Massive Attack, Portishead) in straying from that formula.

In saying the group has a mainstream sensibility, I'm definitely not condemning them. Part of what makes the album nice to listen to is the very fact that everything falls into place so nicely. The group does play with a few different sounds like breakbeats and acoustic guitars, but for the most part sticks to a simple beat structure and well-crafted arrangements with nice female vocals. It makes for a balanced album that will most likely have several singles. Instead of keeping with the usual dark undertones of the genre, the Sneaker Pimps have instead thrown a little bubblegum into the mix and come out with something more like trip-pop. It's not outstanding, but it's not a clunker, either.

Rating: 6.5