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Strays Enhanced

3.9 out of 5 stars 233 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Janes Addiction Strays - Sealed US CD album

Amazon.com

Jane's Addiction helped put the word "alternative" on the middle-American map with a scarlet A, but their straight-up rock was always front and center. On Strays, the first Jane's Addiction studio album in 13 years, there's no mistaking Perry Farrell's trademark vocal sound (a nasal goose? a banshee in flight?) and Dave Navarro's ever-adaptable guitar style. But the band--only bassist Eric Avery is absent from their classic lineup, replaced by Chris Chaney--hasn't come to party like it's 1991. Sure, the balance of hedonism and earnestness, environmentalism and decadence, remains, but the quartet's approach is that of a unit ready to flex a few new muscles. Listeners will notice roof-raisers like "True Nature" and "Hypersonic" first, but some of the quieter tracks ("Price I Pay," with the classic Farrell rationalization "I always do the wrong thing, but I got a good reason," "To Match the Sun") are among the most effective Jane's mood pieces ever. Strays is certainly a much more apt return than 1997’s odds-and-sods compilation Kettle Whistle. --Rickey Wright
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 22, 2003)
  • Original Release Date: 2003
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Enhanced
  • Label: Capitol
  • ASIN: B00009XBZ8
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (233 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,369 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on October 3, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Like all good Jane's albums, you need to listen to them at least 10 times start to finish before determing whether they blow or not. I am beginning to love this album.
I was really bummed out that Perry's artwork was not on the cover or involved with the CD at all. I have a feeling they rushed this album out so it would sell while they toured.
"True Nature" and "The Riches" stood out as classic Jane's adrenaline tunes with great lyrics. I feel like the more the CD spins, the more I get into the songs I initially thought were horrible. The only song that is truly idiotic is "Superhero". What were they thinking?
The album is not as insightful or groundbreaking as previous works, but it keeps us late 80's/early 90's "Jane's freaks" from travelling to Madagascar to find rare and unreleased material. I truly think that, although drugs seem to have broken up the band, they WERE the band. I was always so interested in what happened to Perry on the streets or on some sort of wacked out heroin vision. It added a mystical quality to the music.
I hate to see these old farts on MTV. I used to think they were so cool. It just leaves a bad taste in my mouth to see the father of alternative rock try so hard to fit in to the MTV idiot crowd. Navarro thinks he is some sort of fashion model. Perkins is the only one who is cool enough to know that they are JANE'S ADDICTION. They don't need to try so hard. They are already the coolest band ever.
Anyhoo, buy the album. Listen to it without reading the lyrics in the CD sleeve. Listen to it again and again. There are layers that begin to reveal themselves. It's like a magic eye picture. You can see some cool stuff in there if you look long enough.
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Format: Audio CD
This album is incredibly misunderstood, and as a long-term fan of the band I think I can tell you exactly why (see below, third paragraph). I am totally into whatever Perry Farrell does, almost without fail, but with this 'comeback' Jane's album, I was fully prepared to be disappointed. Stylistically, this album is no Ritual De Lo Habitual, but it's something different, and something, in some ways, better. That's right, I said it. As perfect as Ritual is, it's of its time, and Strays sounds like a 21st century band in the way that early Jane's never will.

As someone who considers myself a diehard, it came as a surprise to me that I came to play this album more than the old Jane's stuff. I put that down mostly to the very modern, high-end production of these songs (their previous, analogue studio albums sound quite flat in comparison). It's a very immediate album. It's true that Perry's lyrics don't capture the same opiate-driven vision of L.A. beatnikdom, but then, he's a pretty well-off - and different - guy these days, and what's more, I found that the energy of the music, the passion and the focus were all still there in spades.
Some will inevitably criticize the album for its lack of the 'epic jam' qualities of Ritual, which we all loved, but if you know the various projects Perry has produced, you'll know that he, and the band, have so many gears, phases and faces. If anything, this album condenses the Jane's sound into shorter, punchier songs, and it works.

Strays was initially co-written with Martyn LeNoble, ex-Porno For Pyros bassist, and the original sessions for the album (before LeNoble was sacked and replaced by Chris Chaney) are *FAR* truer to the spirit of old Jane's.
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Format: Audio CD
Jane's Addiction is one of the only "Alternative" bands that actually fits that title. They were never just classic rock, country rock, or punk rock with new guitar settings. They were literally the Alternative to all that other stuff in the late 80's & 90's that was simply repackaged music under a different catagory title. Quite simply, this was one of the only bands that really matter of the last 20 years.
That said I had high expectations for Strays and they didn't dissapoint. They still sound unlike any other band around, even the ones who try and sound like them. This album is another classic. It's not just a repeat of Nothing's Shocking or Ritual Do Lo Habitual, but it still only sounds like Jane's Addiction.
One thing Jane's still has is some of the best changes and transitions of any band ever. If a song's not doin' it for you at first, wait a few minutes 'cos they'll get to the tasty part. Now let's just hope we don't have to wait 13 years for another follow up, but even if we do, this album proves that: a) reunion albums actually can be great, and b) even at 13 years, this one was worth the wait.
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Format: Audio CD
Well, enough has been said about this album. Personally, I think it's pretty cool - I keep spinning it even after owning it for 7 years.

I noticed that nobody here mentioned the DualDisc version of "Strays", and the 5.1 surround mix contained on it. I suppose that's because it is very rare, being a limited release only available in Boston and Seattle in 2004 as part of a market test for the then-new DualDisc format. The disc was not re-released, and as most of you will know, the regular CD/DVD edition does not contain the 5.1 mix. That's not gonna stop me from reviewing it here, and perhaps some of you will get curious enough to look for this little gem (only took me a year^^).

I must say, this is a fun mix! I was a bit afraid I'd be disappointed with it as I was with the Megadeth "Peace Sells" DVD-A (bad mix, abominable sonics), especially cos this one got buried after that first limited DualDisc release. Perhaps that was for a good reason, I thought. And well, here I am, pleasantly surprised!

Currently on my second run-through, I can definitely say that the mixers (they're not even credited in the booklet - no mention of the surround mixing or the surround content on the DVD-A side anywhere on any of the inlays. Foreshadowing device?) used their creativity there. This is an alternative rock album with various sound effects throughout, so there was enough to throw around in the rears and go buzz across the room. Other than, say, the Three Doors Down surround mixes, where the rears are active, but hardly anything ever _distinctly_ comes from them, you have plenty of clearly defined surround action going on in "Strays", and mostly in the right spots, too.
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