Throwing Muses

Limbo

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    7
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AllMusic Review by

Their first release on their own Throwing Music label, Throwing Muses' Limbo is a strangely anticlimactic album. Though it should be a celebration of the Muses' liberation from a major-label deal that ended up being a major disappointment, it lacks the shimmery spark of the band's best material. However, it's still a solid, well-written affair; the first three songs -- "Buzz," "Ruthie's Knocking," and "Freeloader" -- get Limbo off to a propulsive start, but on the whole, the album suffers from similar rhythms and progressions from song to song. "The Field" has an interesting riff; "Tango" and "Serene" are subtly edgy; dreamy ballads like "Mr. Bones," "Night Driving," and the hidden track "White Bikini Sand" are pleasantly eerie; and "Shark" closes the album on a driving, malevolent note, but few songs seem truly captivating. Limbo's sequencing, which places most of the louder songs on the first half and lets the slower, quieter songs sink to the bottom, also works against the album. Strangely predictable, the effect that the Muses' seventh album achieves isn't so much Limbo as déjà vu; the band's once-mercurial twists and turns feel programmed and somewhat disappointing.

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