Future Crooks - Future Crooks In Paradise (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Future Crooks

Future Crooks In Paradise (2014)

Bad Timing Records

Future Crooks can best be described as Weatherbox's younger brother. There's a strong musical similarity and it could well be due to Brian Warren (the latter's lead) on the guitar for Future Crooks. In terms of identity, it doesn't help that frontman Mike Rogers sounds very much alike to Warren, but it's not necessarily a bad thing. It's just a matter of finding your voice and so far, this record, while not too ambitious, provides a good insight into Future Crooks' tools and capabilities.

Future Crooks In Paradise starts off a bit cheesy and honestly, passable. They hang way too much on the poppier side of punk and feel generic. That's until things pick up on "Briton," which just so happens to offer the first real coating of that Weatherbox chrome. Big hooks and a warm, upbeat feel engulf the mid-section that helps "Deep End" and "Harry Takayama" establish the band's sound a bit more but still, it's tough to shake the thought that Warren's pulling the strings. Rogers does allow a lot of energy to flow off the mic and comes off very accessible. The lyrics fit the melodies and it's a good stab at shifting more to the indie/emo punk area and away from the poppy shades of grey.

The closer "Tremble Tremble" is a great indie rock jam that feels pulled from an Evan Weiss project but still doesn't come off as your typical indie tune. It fits nicely with those who have tastes for the likes of Modern Baseball, Little Big League and You Blew It! While the record has a lot of high moments, some portions, other than the beginning, do wane and come off less memorable. These songs try to camp in the snarky regions but they just don't feel that clever. They fall short despite their punk roots. While these aspects of Future Crooks In Paradise do throw you off at times, it still doesn't take away from a promising debut and the technical proficiency of the musicians. I'm a betting man and definitely am optimistic they'll impress even more on the next go. I think they should play to their indie strengths a bit more than the pop-punk side of the coin. This sounds like the best fit for them.