When Rick Rubin takes on a legacy act (Johnny Cash, Mick Jagger), he drills down to the core of the artist’s craft and enhances it. The Strokes were always somewhat true to their initial qualities of songcrafting and arrangements, so this is another good, not great, album. A familiar thread of melancholy runs through, but not as much cynicism. The radio-friendly “Bad Decisions” is one of the few upbeat tracks, and one song, “Eternal Summer,” evokes Pink Floyd, of all things. The thoughtful, insightful lyrics and the usual skill and creativity of the musicianship make this worth listening to.
Distributed by: Cult/RCA Records
Produced by: Rick Rubin