San Diego’s Switchfoot was at the forefront of the contemporary Christian hard rock scene for so long that it easily assimilated into the mainstream without sacrificing its sense of musical adventure. Vice Verses is the kind of ambitious hard rock record that fans will celebrate with good reason. It’s arguably the best of the group’s career, filled with songs that flash hooks with muscle. “The War Inside” masters the art of the dramatic arc, where keyboards loom in the background while guitars crush the competition. “Blinding Light” sets off with the group’s alt-pop side shimmering through. “Dark Horses” works both a moody texture and an anthemic chorus. The title track shifts toward Switchfoot’s acoustic arena-rock-ballad side, evoking U2 at its most intimate. “Restless” creates a pop haze both ethereal and powerful. “Selling the News” takes a political-sociological turn with vocal manipulations. “Where I Belong” rasps with a seductive warmth. The deluxe version includes a live concert from Center Stage in Atlanta that features many of the band’s fan favorites.