Dot Hacker- How’s your Process (Play)
Reviewed by Michael Rampa


Dot Hacker front man Josh Klingerhoffer has taken the timeless phrase “don’t quit your day job” to another level. While maintaining his position as the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ guitarist he helms his own experimental rock project with RHCP keyboardist Clint Walsh. Jonathan Hischke (Broken Bells) and Gnarls Barkley alum Eric Gardner round out the seasoned session quartet.  Their latest “How’s Your Process (Play) (Oct. 7)” is part two of this year’s double release. With so much material written for the earlier ”How’s Your Process (Work) Klingenhoffer admits that “this is a continuation of  that album with the caveat that..   these songs are on their own unique journey.”


Conventional reviews analyze song structure, lead singles and chart success.This effort like the ensemble itself, itself defies all convention.

The band has a singular ability to create songs which draw attention to the space around them rather than directly to the melody or a lead instrument. Take “Sideclimb.” The syncopated snare, heavy reverb and thumping bass somehow couple with Klingerhoffer’s melancholy vocals to deliver three minutes of cohesive serenity.

The album creates its own atmosphere and creates a dilemma for the average music fan. Its multiple layers and textures make it difficult to discern linear melodies. Though it is pop laced, there isn’t a lot of potential for wide commercial airplay. Klingenhoffer can turn from melancholy ballad to EDM in nanoseconds. How it manages to captivate, entice and dazzle by working almost exclusively outside the lines of traditional songwriting is of no concern. It’s probably best not to over think this one. As the title suggests, just press play.