I should hate this. Their image is laughable–I caught the single on MTV2 and switched it off when I saw the singers multi-colored kung fu Tai Chi gear that he changed for every other camera shot. Even the title of the single is stupid–“Shhh… (hope diggy)”? What the fuck is that? But then my ears caught the song when I wasn’t paying attention, and it has a certain merit. And it mostly comes from the guy I just slammed. Rap flows on the tricky tip, stumbling with intention and hesitation to accentuate the directions of the words. It’s this reluctance to let it all drop at once, and just hit you with spasms and jerks of lyrical surge, that sets this apart from the drivel it seems so intent on becoming. The Incubus-appreciating set might dig this. The vocalist has a mellow lilt in his voice like Incubus’ Brandon Boyd with the ability to move his range around a bit. In “Swing This,” we see a snottier attempt at a punkier rant, mixed with a snappy finger jazzy breakdown with playful bass interludes, that shows Apex Theory attempting a more raw sound. Songs have a certain sense of sly movement, swaying and dropping (when they aren’t making you yawn). Out of 5 songs, 3 were worth tracking. The closing track “Trust Ease” is an exercise in patience as one idea of a guitar progression is backed by some oh-so-personal lyrics (thanks for sharing) that does nothing forever, then does it some more, but louder. There’s a certain amount of knee-jerk reaction to hate anything coming out with a rap-inflected metal tip, but I don’t completely hate this. Hate their image, but if you knew me, heh, health, fashion, MY two main concerns, so I should shut up about now.