P.O.D.

Payable on Death (Atlantic)

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The only possible surprise in the third CD from the famously pious P.O.D. would be if the bonus-disc video game turned out to be a first-person shooter. It isn't. Everything we've come to expect from the band and less, Payable on Death barely gets its gentle-mosh guitar groove on before singer Sonny rhymes "Fi-yah," "dee-si-yahh," and "take me hi-yahh." Down here in the mortal coil, you are missed, Brad Nowell.

Decorated with enough dreadlocks, tats, trippy Hindu artwork, and Zeppelinesque runes to shake its Christian-rock tag, P.O.D. sticks to the same rap-rock that drove its previous two albums multiplatinum. The last crossover band standing also falls into the same trap that fusion forerunners 311 did. Previously, P.O.D. rapped, then rocked, then spat some "mad style-y." It now does all three at the same time, the latter far too often. This is middling sludge for the converted. If you're not, this rap-rock revival's godawful.

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