Antenna

Cave In's weird blend of progressive rock, hardcore, and metal has made it something of an underground sensation in recent years.

Cave In's weird blend of progressive rock, hardcore, and metal has made it something of an underground sensation in recent years. But on Antenna, its RCA debut, the group has abruptly cashed in a good deal of its personality for an unflattering, generic modern-rock sound. There are a handful of powerful, interestingly constructed numbers, such as "Anchor," the Rush-esque "Lost in the Air," and the nearly nine-minute "Seafrost." And sure, Stephen Brodsky can scream passionately in key, but his over-earnest yelping is no fun at all on cuts like "Rubber and Glue" and "Inspire," the riff from which sounds an awful lot like Nirvana's "Scentless Apprentice." The ballad "Beautiful Son" seems dropped in from another album entirely, as it piles on howling guitar lines, acoustic strumming, and double-tracked vocals. It's a shame there isn't more to like here, because this band appeared to have really arrived at something unique. Better luck next time.—JC