CRYPTACIZE – Mythomania (2009)

Cryptacize - Mythomania Cryptacize’s debut album, Dig That Treasure was an album that went unloved by me. How unloved? Well, I received my copy as a parting gift from a radio station that I was interning at (the album didn’t fit the format of the station, so they gave it to me – would it have made any difference if they knew that the album did not, in fact, fit the format of any station? Probably not). I listened to it a few times, and promptly sold it to the local CD store. Dig That Treasure was a frustrating vapid and terminally passive album, and I’ve got no use for such a thing in my album collection. So, out of little more than morbid curiosity, I picked up the band’s newest album, Mythomania; while it isn’t exactly a decision I regret, it’s certainly one I’d have to think about in greater detail, were I able to go back and do it again.

On Mythomania, Cryptacize are no longer working diligently at creating as little as is humanly possible with their music; instead, they’ve opted to take a new direction, and create some half-hearted Calexico songs and mix them up with some half-hearted Animal Collective songs. While that might not sound like a very pleasant listening experience, it’s a marked improvement over their debut, in the sense that these songs (despite being rudimentary emulations), actually have a pulse. However, the biggest problem with Cryptacize’s music remains unchanged: the compositions here are as sloppy and incoherent as on Dig That Treasure (the difference being that the band has breathed some energy into them this time around). Nothing on the album seems to gel together. It kind of reminded of a later-period Mars Volta songs in that regard – a handful of ideas tossed into a single song that stop and start with a total lack of grace.

It’s a shame, because I think that if Cryptacize were to think a little bit harder about their music before they wrote it, they’d craft some wonderful songs. Sadly, though, I have yet to see anything of the sort from the band. Even if you know the musicians in the band from their other projects, I’d recommend grabbing a few songs of iTunes or something, before you commit to owning the entire album in any format. Whether you’re new to the band, or are having your first encounter with them, Mythomania is probably not what you’re expecting.


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