Distort Yourself

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Distort Yourself
Institute distort yourself.jpg
Studio album by Institute
Released September 13, 2005
Recorded 2004-2005
Genre Hard rock[1]
Length 51:07
Label Interscope

Distort Yourself is the debut and only studio album by American rock band Institute, led by then-former Bush frontman Gavin Rossdale. Released on September 13, 2005 through Interscope Records, the album was co-produced by Helmet frontman Page Hamilton. The album also produced the single "Bullet Proof Skin."

Release and commercial performance[edit]

The album was released on September 13, 2005 and debuted at #81 on the Billboard Top 200 Album Charts with first week sales slightly over 12,000. Total U.S. sales as of April 2008 were only 54,000 copies.[2]

"Bullet Proof Skin" served as the album's single which reached #26 on both the Billboard Mainstream Rock Chart and on the Billboard Modern Rock Chart. It had considerable radio airplay upon release and, in September 2005, was performed live on nearly every late night television program[3] as well as The Tyra Banks Show.[4] The song was featured on the Stealth soundtrack and the video game NHL 06. A music video was also filmed for it, directed by Kevin Kerslake who has done videos for Nirvana and Green Day.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[1]
The Guardian 2/5 stars[5]
People 3/4 stars[6]
Punknews.org 4/5 stars[7]

The album received mixed reviews from critics. Allmusic's Stephen Thomas Erlewine was positivie in his review, stating that the album "sounds livelier than anything he's [Rossdale] done since Razorblade Suitcase." Erlewine also added: "Not that it sounds hip, or even particularly relevant to the sound of 2005, but that doesn't matter -- Rossdale is carrying along as if nothing has changed, staying true to his vision, and those who have stuck with him will find Institute a nice revitalization for the ever-earnest post-grunge icon."[1] Punknews.org critic Alex Marriott, who described the record as "an enjoyable effort," thought: "It's about time radio-rock got louder, and this could be the album to do that."[7] Chuck Arnold of People responded positively to the album, writing: "the British rocker is letting his inner head-banger fly with a harder sound than anything he ever did with his old group, and though his musical makeover isn't as wildly triumphant as Stefani's dance-pop reinvention, he makes a solid, credible transformation."[6]

Despite criticizing the album's grunge-indebted sound, Caroline Sullivan of The Guardian wrote: "His tendency toward lachrymose semi-poetry is countered by sharp production and some fairly killer choruses. This will brighten every alt-metaller's Christmas."[5] Contactmusic.com critic Alex Lai thought that "many parts of the record is unimaginative and unspectacular, which is frustrating after a promising beginning."[8] musicOMH's Vik Bansal wrote that the album "may not win a prize for originality, but then again it’s hardly lagging behind most of the opposition where that characteristic is concerned."[9]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Gavin Rossdale, except where noted.

  1. "Bullet Proof Skin" (Rossdale, Photek) - 4:25
  2. "When Animals Attack" - 4:00
  3. "Come On Over" - 3:58
  4. "Information Age" (Rossdale, Chris Traynor) - 3:42
  5. "Wasteland" - 4:18
  6. "Boom Box" - 4:36
  7. "Seventh Wave" - 4:23
  8. "The Heat of Your Love" - 3:33
  9. "Ambulances" - 4:35
  10. "Secrets and Lies" - 4:58
  11. "Mountains" - 4:05
  12. "Save the Robots" - 4:29



  1. ^ a b c Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Institute - Distort Yourself". Allmusic. Retrieved October 29, 2015. 
  2. ^ [1] Billboard Online. Retrieved April 15, 2008.
  3. ^ Videos Archived December 22, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. Gavin-Rossdale.Net. Retrieved March 13, 2008.
  4. ^ Tyra rocks out with Gavin TyraShow.WarnerBros.com. Retrieved March 13, 2008.
  5. ^ a b Sullivan, Caroline (December 16, 2015). "Institute, Distort Yourself". The Guardian. Retrieved October 29, 2015. 
  6. ^ a b Arnold, Chuck (September 19, 2005). "Picks and Pans Review: Institute". People. 64 (12). 
  7. ^ a b Marriott, Alex (October 14, 2005). "Institute - Distort Yourself (2005)". Punknews.org. 
  8. ^ "Review of Distort Yourself Album by Institute". Contactmusic.com. October 10, 2005. Retrieved October 29, 2005. 
  9. ^ Bansal, Vix (September 19, 2005). "Institute - Distort Yourself Album Review". musicOMH. Retrieved October 29, 2005. 

External links[edit]