TITLE: The Essential Incubus
YEAR RELEASED: Compilation
CHART ACTION: None
SINGLES: Charting Top 10: Pardon Me (#102 US, #3 Alternative, #7 Mainstream, #61 UK), Stellar (#107 US, #2 Alternative, #17 Mainstream), Drive (#9 US, #1 Alternative, #8 Mainstream, #40 UK), Wish You Were Here (#60 US, #2 Alternative, #4 Mainstream, #27 UK), Nice to Know You (#105 US, #9 Alternative, #9 Mainstream), Warning (#104 US, #3 Alternative, #27 UK), Megalomaniac (#55 US, #1 Alternative, #2 Mainstream, #23 UK), Talk Shows on Mute (#116 US, #3 Alternative, #18 Mainstream, #43 UK), Anna-Molly (#66 US, #1 Alternative, #4 Mainstream, #109 UK), Dig (#94 US, #4 Alternative, #17 UK), Oil and Water (#8 Alternative, #38 Mainstream), Love Hurts (#113 US, #1 Alternative, #40 Mainstream), Black Heart Inertia (#7 Alternative, #34 Mainstream), Adolescents (#3 Alternative, #28 Mainstram)
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: If you know more, you really don’t need this collection
LINEUP: Brandon Boyd, Mike Einziger, Jose Pasillas II. Alex Katunich was replaced by Ben Kenney in 2003. Gavin Koppell was replaced by Chris Kilmore in 1998
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: What are they? Nu Metal? Hard Rock? Funk Metal? Alternative? This long standing band falls into the cracks, which may explain their longevity and their decline as well.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Incubus was signed as part of the stampede to sign nu-metal bands after Korn hit it big, but unlike some of their genre bretheren, they have a more expansive sound and sometimes defy pigeonholing.
They’ve had a scratching / hip-hop element from very early in their career, used funk bass lines, and after being mostly a nu-metal band they branched into a bit of a softer version of themselves with acoustic elements (“Drive” got to the Top 10 thanks to this). That seemed to be the key to success on the radio, with play by alternative and rock stations. But as time went on, they didn’t change and pop radio did, as did rock radio. So they’re getting less and less airplay.
Incubus seems to be a mile wide and an inch deep at times. Their tracks don’t stick in your ear, and many seem to be variations on the same musical motif that had been established earlier in their career. Basically, they’re good at what they do, and after all this time they haven’t really changed up much of their routine. You know what you’re getting.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: Their original turntablist (Gavin Koppell) has a restraining order against him from being near their current DJ (Chris Kilmore). Drama
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No
GRADE B: This is more than enough Incubus, but it’s good to have a comprehensive look instead of a small, shoddy collection.