A band that seems to get off on being disliked, Brokencyde is like the new-school version of Insane Clown Posse: a group of average MCs who make obnoxious music, but remain inexplicably popular among a small set of ridiculously dressed, predictably defiant youth. Much more self-aware than it’s usually given credit for—Brokencyde’s first album was suitably titled I’m Not A Fan, But The Kids Like It!—the group works as its own gossip-fueled hype machine. And though its work isn’t the stuff of great musicianship, exactly, it is kind of brilliant—at least in the way Jersey Shore is academic and reality TV is a microcosm of American values.
The third album from Brokencyde opens with “I like to get drunk.” Not much else happens thereafter. Guilty Pleasure insists on being just that, a house-party soundtrack of shallow anthems and radio-rap dance beats. It’s definitely better produced and more cohesive than previous efforts from Brokencyde, though. The screamy MySpace emo-core of its earlier days has been way toned down in favor of a more straightforward pop/crunk-envy sound.
But inching a low bar up a few notches still makes for a pretty short leap. Is Guilty Pleasure vapid? Of course. But is it really any worse than LMFAO or Innerpartysystem, the Kardashians or TMZ? Hardly. At least Brokencyde isn’t trying to win over critics. It already knows where it stands, and for the guys in the band, being hated is just part of the fun.