Crime in Stereo - Selective Wreckage (Cover Artwork)

Crime in Stereo

Selective Wreckage (2008)

Bridge Nine

Regardless of what Selective Wreckage's promotional materials / the band themselves will tell you, it is at its heart a B-sides and rarities compilation. While it is described as more than that in most press regarding it, the 10 songs play like a gathering of songs that just weren't good enough for their other full-lengths.

2006's The Troubled Stateside brought CIS some well-deserved recognition and 2007's Is Dead broke down the melodic hardcore sound they had developed with past releases into a slower, more dense package. The tracks on Selective Wreckage are taken partially from the recording sessions for each of those past two full-lengths. Without looking at the liner notes, it is not extremely evident which tracks are from which as the album holds a pretty steady feel. However, some tracks ("These People Ought to Know Who We Are and That We Are Here," "Everywhere and All The Time") definetly feel closer to Is Dead, whereas some ("The Bride," "When the Women Come Out to Dance") seem more similar to the melodic hardcore sound they churned out prior to 2007.

When it comes to quality, the results are mixed. Is Dead was extremely well-recieved by fans and critics alike, and it seems a bit strange that CIS would follow it up with a release that (partially) harkens back to their old sound after their new one seems to work so well. That is not to say the fast songs are bad. In fact, the combo of "Takbir" and "The Bride" midway through the album feels like an injection of adrenaline after a couple mid-tempo tracks. The truth of the release is, bookended by a fuzzy minute-long intro and two and a half-minute minimalistic outro, there are only eight real tracks to chew on. Fans of the band have probably heard "Love" and "When the Women Come Out tDance" before, the latter being released on the Fuel.Transit.Sleep EP. Some of the material ("Desertbed," "Four X's") feel a lot like filler and while some of the songs are really stellar ("The Bride," "Everywhere and All the Time"), there just aren't enough songs to get into to keep this release on par with the rest of CIS's catalog.

Granted it's worth a listen, but Selective Wreckage is a bit hit-or-miss when it comes down to it.