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Artist: The Angry Einsteins
Label: Retroactive Records
Time: 11 tracks/ 44:21 min

Take an '80s rock sound, add harmony from all three members, and the long-awaited mainstream project of The Angry Einsteins, a.k.a. X-Sinner, presents itself. Cracked offers a rock sound comparable to Def Leppard and Cinderella with some fun twists on the vocals. The band members saw themselves as mad scientists while working on the project, evidenced by the Frankenstein combination of acappella vocals and in-your-face rock.

Cracked gets started with a catchy little tune called "Always Be There." The message is pretty straightforward. "Silver Lining" is the next song and reminds the listener what to look for after it rains. The solid rock song on the album is "Down for You." The vocals in some parts remind me of Aerosmith with heavy guitar riffs and a drive-it-home chorus at the end. As with most '80s sound bands, there is that one song with a heartfelt message. "The Letter (Pardon Me)" was inspired by an actual letter written by a teenager in a detention center to his parents. As a child, the teen was grateful for "all the nice things" but wanted more attention and someone to listen. The story in "The Letter" is so strong and heartfelt that teens and parents of today should be able to really relate to this song.

The time and effort put into making Cracked, a unique and creative album, is evident from beginning to end. After a dozen listens I have yet to find a reason to put it on the shelf to collect dust. The next offering from X-sinner or the side project The Angry Einsteins will be equally welcome.

Eric Stephens   8/10/2003


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