Dreamworks - 2002 - 42 minutes

While they deserve much credit for hearing the death knell of nu-metal sooner than most of their peers, Papa Roach's latest sounds like work in progress. As 2000's major label debut 'Infest' showed, the Californian quartet have plenty of smarts in the riff-chorus-riff department, but on 'lovehate...' they've ditched the conventions of the genre that made them famous in favour of a straight(er) ahead rock sound.

And it kicks off in great style, 'M-80's two-minute plus burst of noise one of the great hear-us-roar songs of the last few years. But with its finale still ringing, the 'Roach then bring you to some kind of comfort zone of guitars, churning out decent but not really memorable songs - the chords too familiar to praise them with throwing down the gauntlet.

Things pick up again with first single 'She Loves Me Not' but it's telling that its competition for catchiest song on the album is their cover of The Pixies' 'Gouge Away'. If this album had come out in the wasteland of the late 80s it would've annihilated the competition with one big power chord, but times move on and while Papa Roach have changed paths, they've a ways to go yet.

Harry Guerin

Tracklisting: M-80 (Explosive Energy Movement) - Life is a Bullet - Time and Time Again - Walking the Barbed Wire - Decompression Period - Born With Nothing, Die With Everything - She Loves Me Not - Singular Indestructable Droid - Black Clouds - Code of Energy - Lovehatetragedy - Gouge Away - Never Said It