Garbage: A screenplay of sorts

It’s always fun to hear a taste of the past in today’s music. Often, artists neglect their own previous work in order to focus on the future, but Garbage remembers what made them golden in the first place and uses it to their advantage today in Not Your Kind of People. It is truly advantageous of them, too, and is possibly the most admirable quality of their nearly 20-year-old artistry.

Somehow Not Your Kind Of People works like a script where every song is a scene. Charging into the the record at full speed, reeling in with adamant courage in “Automatic System Habit.” Spitting words like “tell your mother, tell your father, tell your friends, tell your teacher/I won’t be your dirty little secret,” there’s a tension here that can be cut with a knife, but in the best and most animated way.

“Blood For Puppies” follows with a ’90s-style sound but a contemporary appeal within its grunge riffs and captivating melody. This is the introduction to what’s to come in the rest of the album, full of a sensational clash of modern and vintage that can’t be matched.

Just know that, at any point along the album, if the beat alone isn’t enough to win your approval, tune into the lyrics. They’ll blow you away.

Let it be known that Garbage’s sound definitely isn’t for everybody — especially in the way it changes from song to song in emotion and vocal tones — but the variance always comes with a surprise.

For some reason, the band never finds a middle ground between pumped up musical thrillers and melancholy wallowers on this record. Though both styles on Not Your Kind of People are fascinating and well-produced, they don’t converge well. This is why the hypothetical screenplay is incomplete, though picturesque and sonically appealing.

Before the show ends, “Man On A Wire” throws together the essential Rock & Roll to rouse its way out. It’s angry and spiteful, tying in the album’s vicious, thriving energy with the groovy edge to set it apart from anything else in its field.

Broken down “Beloved Freak” is full of healing energy and powerful storytelling, reviving lines from “This Little Light Of Mine” to gain an unpredictable perspective on a stirring hymn of self-praise. It closes the set on a wildly positive note.

“Man On A Wire” and “Beloved Freak” may well be the strongest two songs on Not Your Kind of People, but they certainly don’t sound good next to each other. The juxtaposition between the two — a screeching halt from high energy to slow empowerment — is rather startling.

All of the songs on new Not Your Kind of People have the kind of energy that would sound absolutely killer in real life. Amplifying the volume, feeling the heat of the high intensity soundtrack in the presence of some of music’s most consistent and influential rockers of today is an experience that can’t be beat. Plus, there’s a guarantee of the band’s classics to be thrown into the set list. Garbage’s ongoing tour is sure to be a lively one, just like the rollercoaster listeners rode on upon with Not Your Kind of People this month.

About Jason Radford

A lunatic for pop music. Gay Chicago resident imported from the Twin Cities. Visual designer, recent graduate and writer. Left handed.