A third of the way into Gang of Four’s seventh studio album, Content, the band asks, “Who Am I?” and by the time you reach the final track, you might be asking yourself who this band is.

England’s post-punk pioneers are no strangers to experimental, minimal arrangements, but Content tears the envelope instead of pushing it. “It Was Never Gonna Turn Out Too Good” provides the pun I don’t have to and made me look through the liner notes to see if T-Pain was a guest. The auto-tune, robotic voice sounds like an inside joke that somehow made it through the cutting room floor.

There are bright spots on Content, but they’re few and far between. Like a rock that gets a good skip on a lake, as soon as you hit a high point, the next song brings you back down with the gravity of mediocrity.

Grade: C-



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