Treefiddy Review: Incubus – If Not Now, When?

The Down Lizzo:

After a FIVE YEAR hiatus, alternative rock / funk metal / nu metal band Incubus are BACK! That’s right! Incubus! Y’know, the guys who wrote “Drive” back when we were all in highschool and then released a slew of critically and commercially successful albums?

Hello? (Is this thing on…?)


Sick Tracks

They’re all pretty sick if you’re talking about the traditional interpretation of the word, like that pale kid at school with the dark circles under his eyes who looked like he might ralph at any given moment. Oh wait, I think I’m confusing my life with the Simpsons…



Where was I? Oh yeah, new Incubus album review (*sigh).

Look, it’s not a bad album, it’s just a little limp noodley and lacking the oompf that made their previous albums great.

“Promises, Promises” is a really likeable song, totally non-threatening, radio-friendly and reminiscent of “Southern Girl” from A Crow Left Of The Murder. The dominant instrument on the track is the piano played by DJ Kilmore (the dude who used to rock the decks in previous incarnations of this band).

“Isadore” is also a solid track, carefully written and arranged it’s hard to fault it except it’s basically the same chord progression from “Talk Shows On Mute” (also from A Crow Left Of The Murder), only picked instead of strummed and frontman Brandon Boyd’s vocal melody is also strikingly similar.



The album changes pace abruptly near the end, like the band has suddenly woken up from a nice afternoon nap and remembered they’re fucking Incubus dude!

Halfway through “In The Company Of Wolves” things take an awesome turn for the darker and the mood of the album changes from happy-go-lucky summer picnic to, quick get the kids in the car! An asylum escapee is coming at us with a weird grin and a threatening erection.

“Switchblade” follows soon after, a throw-back to the powerful album that was Light Grenades and right after that, “Adolescents” (the first single off the album) kicks in to remind us that there was a time when this band used to rock out, unashamedly, and they were great at it.


Should You Give A Shit?

I guess so, I’m not sure. It could be that this album is a “grower”, it’s certainly gotten better with every listen that I’ve given it, but like I said at the beginning, it’s very tame for Incubus which I found disappointing.

Just take it for what it is, a collection of mostly easy-breezy, mature and thoughtful songs and you’ll probably enjoy it. I just don’t feel like I’m ready to get this old yet, but maybe once I have children of my own and I’m looking for something to put them to sleep to, I’ll revaluate my opinion of If Not Now, When?


Here’s “Patience, Patience” in the meantime.



Final verdict: 6/10


7 Responses to “Treefiddy Review: Incubus – If Not Now, When?”

  1. July 20, 2011 at 11:08 am

    Spot on. If it were any other band besides Incubus, I wouldn’t have given this album a second glance. There are some intriguing moments here and there but they are too few and far between. I don’t mind when bands take on a different style or head in a different direction, but this album feels lazy and uninspired, although, very easy to listen to. The production is solid and so are the performances, but it seems like the band were either scared to dive headfirst into this new ‘genre’ of theirs, or just couldn’t care less about challenging themselves.

    A disappointment, no doubt, but one of the best disappointments of recent times. This would be a great album from a lesser band, but can Incubus blame people for expecting a masterpiece? Maybe I’ll appreciate this album more when I’m 42 years old and I’m driving to the coast.

    • July 20, 2011 at 8:23 pm

      No, I don’t think Incubus can blame people for expecting a masterpiece, especially considering the calibre of Light Grenades, which is my personal favourite of theirs, followed closely by Make Yourself and A Crow Left Of The Murder.

      If nothing else, the new album has made me blow the dust off their previous albums and give them another spin, which I guess is a good thing, but at the same time, they just reminded me how lacking the new one is.


  2. 3 Psymon
    July 20, 2011 at 11:18 am

    Have to agree with you guys. Got hold of the album a few weeks ago and even though I’ve listened to it a number of times now, I just, well, don’t like it…
    It’s difficult to put my finger on exactly why I don’t like it, I guess I was expecting a lot more passion and innovation.
    And there’s almost none of either… *sad*

    • July 20, 2011 at 8:25 pm

      Big time. I think the easy answer here to the question posed in the album’s title is “Never”.

      Did you hear Boyd’s solo album by any chance? Any good?


  3. 5 Amy
    July 27, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    I died a little inside when I listened to the intro riff of “Patience, Patience”. I think I made it about 43 seconds into the song before I had to shut it the hell up – I’m listening to “Pardon Me” now to remind myself that they were, once in fact, radical.

    (I think I had a similar response to your Seether post).


    • July 27, 2011 at 5:09 pm

      It’s bad hey? I’m sorry you had to hear that Ebz, it’s a sad, sorry reflection of a band that used to kick a whole lotta ass.
      Also going to listen to “Pardon Me” (LOVE that song). Even the acoustic version of that song is more badass than most of If Not Now…

  4. 7 paula
    November 23, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    freaking disgrace is what it is.

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