Archive for the 'Progressive' Category

Album – Get On With It – Caves

Posted by admin on 14th October 2008

  • Band / Artist : CavesmySpace
  • Genre : Minimalist / Progressive / Glam
  • Sample Track Download : Closure
  • Buy CD : CD Baby
  • Buy Digital Download : iTunes
  • Rating : 8.5 out of 10

Maybe I’m an old fart who likes to dwell in past musical glory, but here’s an album, that draws on many of the bands, that I grew up with, The Specials, The Clash, The Cure and many others, most of whom strangely seem to begin with “The”. Hearing that undeniable similarity, but with a modern sheen, is a brilliant feast for my ears. On the bands website their genres are listed as Minimalist, Progressive and Glam. Not wishing to contradict them, but I would more put them at Rock, with a hint of Reggae and Ska. You could probably add to that a touch of Pop, but this is by no means a pop record, as it feels lot more grown up, but then maybe that’s my memories skewing my thoughts.

The CD opens with “Curiosity” and it’s hear that The Specials came to mind. Vocally however there a hint of something more theatrical, which I suppose is where they see the Glam coming in. The title track “Get On With It”, filled in the missing piece, of the band I was trying to think of when making comparison, that band being The Beat, or The English Beat as they were known in North America. This band fits them like a glove, but a loose fitting glove, as they manage to carve out a sound all of their own, but the influence is unmistakable, even if in all probability it’s totally accidental.

This is another one of those albums, that just flies by in a blink of an eye. Not that 45 minutes is too short a length, it’s just the result of well crafted music, which washes over you. Particular tracks of note for me are the aforementioned title track, “I Lied” which is one of those tracks that starts relatively slowly and builds nicely. Rounding off my picks for the album are “Without Thinking” and “You(Plus)Me”.

The only song I felt slightly missed the mark was “Samurai”, which has a much darker tone and a much different sound than the rest of the album and for that reason stood out and just jutted out like an awkward angle.

Conclusion : A fantastic find and an album that proved effortless to listen to. Really excited to see what the band comes out with next.

Posted in Glam, Minimalist, Progressive | No Comments »

Album – Cure for the Common Crush – Id Guinness

Posted by admin on 15th January 2008

Two things struck me when I first put on this album, or should I say two artists. One of them has been receiving renewed interest of late and that would be Led Zepplin. The other is an artist I reviewed here back in August, Aaron English. There is a real air of theatrics, which is exceedingly uncommon in albums today, or rather should I say in good albums. I’ve been following Id for quite a while. My memory was jogged again, way back in August of 2006 when I heard a track of his on the PC Podcast. This is an album that grabs you the first instant. When the last track finishes, you really feel like you’ve listened to something epic, in the best traditions of old.

Opening with “Rising River” you are immediately engulfed by what can only perceived as a supergroup in action, which is quite magical and awe inspiring. “The One That Got Away” has wonderful strings underpinning the track, which brings back memories of the Beatles, Eleanor Rigby. Where that was tinged with sadness, this track is tinged with a dark, almost maniacal feeling. The next track “Jade Garden” employs that vox coder sound, sometimes used by Pink Floyd, adding an inexplicable air to a song, that probably would have felt quite different without.

“I Have Seen the Future” feels very much like a natural break, with a more sedate pace and a sound that is much more radio friendly, Not that that means too much these days. I probably listen to about 10 minutes of radio, during a working week and that’s just for the news in the morning. “Down to This” starts of with a much more simpler, rougher sound than you expect, compared to the tracks that precedes it, but due to this sound, mainly due to the guitars, does again feel very much like Zepplin.

When an album has a title track, I’ve mentioned a few times, how I always expect it to be the strength on which the other tracks can lie for support. I wasn’t too sure about “Cure for the Common Crush”. It is a very laid back and slow burning song and to tell the truth, it took me a few listens to really warm to it, but I think it has a great feel and the production is great, with many interesting sounds and vocals. The next track “Always Crashing in the Same Car”, is a David Bowie cover, to which I’m not too familiar. I’m a big Bowie fan, but I’m only really familiar with his major hits, plus the odd album, usually his later releases. So when I heard this track I was unaware of the Bowie roots, until my memory was jogged by an email Id sent me, reminding me that this could not be the downloadable track used for this album, as being a cover it was not podsafe. For me this was a pleasant track, but nothing more. This track indeed marks the turning point of the album. The darker, edgier side is replaced by a more chilled out and relaxed side, which I have to admit, at first I was disappointed with, but the more I heard the album, the more I liked this split personality.

“Negative” with it’s sweeping keyboards, takes me back to the 90’s, as does the whole sound / production of the track. The 90’s theme continues with “The Joke”, which also brought to mind A-Ha, the Norwegian band, best remembered for their hit song “Take on Me”. It’s not so much Id’s voice, but more the phrasing of the lyrics and the lyrics themselves. “Beaches” is probably my least favorite track. It’s very moody and atmospheric, but just didn’t click with me. “Beautiful Goodbye”, is also a very pleasant track, but similarly, didn’t grab the way I really wanted it to. The penultimate track “25 Watts”, feels very 80’s rock, almost like a track from one of those teen movies, but there’s something about it, maybe the nostalgic feel, that really struck a chord with me.

And so the final track “Wailing Wall” is upon me and suddenly that real magic feel from the earlier tracks was back. What’s surprising is that this track is more laid back prog rock, than the earlier theatrical style, but it’s just a glorious ramble, with some very Floydian female vocals.

Conclusion : This album reminds me greatly of getting my grubby mitts on a new Pink Floyd release. At first you have the excitement, then the wonder of a new discovery, rounded off with the familiarity of an old friend. It’s an album that comes out of the gate with a snarl and finishes off with a lingering embrace.

Posted in New Wave, Progressive, Rock | No Comments »