This album is a comeback album for the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Prior to this, their musical fortunes had deteriorated somewhat after the release of One Hot Minute without their legendary guitarist John Frusciante. He eventually rejoined the band after Dave Navarro left, and they quickly recorded and released this amazing album, Californication. A good listen from start to finish, let’s see why.
Around The World begins with some loud, fuzz bass and some manic instrumentation and singing from the group. Anthony Keidis sings in a semi-Rap style of voice, and this is an excellent melodic piece of music. A great song to kick start this album with, and many RHCP fans and casual listeners alike agreed. Some excellent musical breaks are here as well, and there are some vocal imitations of sound effects here as well. A great opening song.
Parallel Universe has an excellent combination of guitar and bass guitar work in a jam like structure. The chorus and melody is very uplifting and listenable here. The lyrics here are quite impressionistic and the whole thing is a marvelous listening experience. The midsection here is pretty cool, with electric and bass guitar parts chasing each other. Quite an extraordinary listen really, and proof that the Red Hot Chili Peppers had indeed, returned to form. There is an extended outro that is really good here. Excellent.
Next is Scar Tissue which is a great Pop/Rock song, with Anthony Keidis sounding super southern American here. It is an extraordinary listen, and still sounds really fresh and amazing today. The lyrics are rather nonsensical, but sound really top, along with all the other elements of this song. The chorus in particular is catchy. The outro has a melancholy guitar solo in it, good effort by these guys. Cool.
Following is Otherside which is a pretty depressing sounding track. It isn’t bad per se, just really downbeat and depressing. Still, it has some excellent drumming by Chad Smith, who is really an underrated musician. It is a good song to hear, despite its depressing melancholy about it. It does have a good guitar solo in it, though.
Get On Top is far more upbeat. Beginning with wah-wah guitar and funky basslines, this is an energetic and crowd pleasing sort of track. It sounds energetic and awesome. This is a really great piece of music that is quite underrated from this album. Nonetheless, it deserves its place here, and is very well done. The solo is excellent, and the sounds throughout this song are really fantastic. Surprisingly good. The outro is insane sounding.
Californication is the title track here, and sounds really great. This has some strange lyrics about it, but overall refers directly to the centre of Hollywood and some excellent Rock groups that is the state of California. It is super excellent, and sounds just as good as it does today as it did back in 1999. Really excellent playing by everyone here in the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and has references to Kurt Cobain and Star Wars, amongst other oddities. The guitar solo is very expressive. Flea and John Frusciante’s playing are both excellent here. Top music by top musicians here.
After that Easily enters, and is rather good, but obviously not as good as what came before it. A good song that does have good playing on it, but is not as amazing as it could be. There is an awful slide guitar solo in this song, which is probably not needed here. Regardless, it is listenable, just not perfect. Could have been edited somewhat.
Following is Porcelain which is incredibly slow and very much a sonic exploration sort of piece. A chilled and relaxing sort of piece, this is an excellent listen that is nonsensical with the lyrics, but good to hear regardless. Another good song and a fresh sound here.
Emit Remmus which is Summer Time, back to front, comes next. It has some weird sounds at the start, and sounds rather awful sonically, to be frank. The chorus is a slight improvement, but this obviously needs a rethink here. The song is good aside from the ordinary guitars, and is okay, but not great by any means. Rather throwaway, to be honest.
I Like Dirt is next. It is a weird name for a better song than what was before it, with a funky rhythmic groove about it. It is a good listen, with a semi-Jimi Hendrix feel in the guitar playing here. The guitar solo sounds like wah-wah mania here, and is pretty amazing. Good song.
Next up is This Velvet Glove which has some acoustic guitar strumming with some great additional melodies on top. Another good effort, and this shows quite clearly why this album was seen as a comeback album for the RHCP. Even the lesser tracks here are really quite good. Some of the electric guitar parts show John Frusciante doing very well here. This is another one of those underrated gems by the group. Good to hear.
Following is Savior which has a weird intro to this song, before going into a good song with a great performance by Anthony Keidis. He really makes this song come alive. After a minute or so, Flea kicks in a completely different groove and the piece changes dramatically. An unusual song, but it sounds quite good regardless. It has an interesting outro as well.
Purple Stain has quite a cool, funky jam feel to start with and sounds really excellent. Some random lyrics are included with this tune, and the chorus is quite enjoyable. A great and cool listening experience, this is a good tune. This is proof that the lesser known tracks from this album are just as good as the better known tracks. There is a very good guitar/bass solo here, and sounds fantastic to hear. Chad Smith’s drumming here is really top towards the end, and this whole piece is great. A fantastic listen.
Right On Time comes next, and sounds like filler. Still, it is good filler at that. It is less than two minutes long, and has Anthony Keidis putting in a decent vocal performance. Not bad, but not great either.
Last of the main tracks here is Road Trippin’ is a really good way to finish the main part of the album off. Acoustic guitars, strings and some fantastic lyrics and production arrangements are here. A nice piece to hear, this is really top. It is about youthful adventures and misadventures on a road trip. Brilliant.
Following is the bizarre Fat Dance which is the first of the bonus tracks. It sounds like a joke, because it is. Still, this joke of a song is decent and catchy, although rather repetitive. A strange listen regardless, but interesting to hear all the same. There are some backwards sounds here as well. Interesting.
Over Funk sounds like a basic funk sort of jam, before Anthony Keidis begins singing. It is another good song, although perhaps not great all the same. A short and enjoyable piece that is rather forgettable, it is okay but not fantastic here.
Quixoticelixer is the very last track on this edition, and is actually pretty good. A nice way to finish off this album, it is an underrated gem from this album, so keep an ear out for it. The numerous vocal parts here are really quite good. Without warning, the second half bursts into a completely different sounding section.
Okay, this is definitely a comeback album from the Red Hot Chili Peppers and they do well here. However, it is imperfect an album as some tracks are not as good as some of the others on here. All the same, it is a good and a very strong effort by the group. Definitely worth hearing.