Posts tagged hard rock
Nothing More - “Salem”
There’s sort of a Closure in Moscow-esque menace to this band’s percolating rhythms (and the vocalist’s singing style, obviously). As well, the hoarse-shouted voodoo of the song’s main hook here reminds me of the breakdown in Dance Gavin Dance’s “Uneasy Hearts Weigh the Most,” or some of Gatsbys American Dream’s more psychotic bar singing moments: “BURN THE WITCH! HA, HA, HA!”
Where does your misfortune grow?
From a humble house, with a cross burning slow?
You fear she will challenge your throne
So you dig the dirt and it’s selling like gold
Ten fingers, ten toes point
but not a damn one back at you
It’s your fault you fall apart
The problem is in you
Burn the witch!
Or stone and rope to bind her soul
Sink or swim
And watch the truth drown below
You search the hills, swift and true
Look outside yourself, for it cannot be you
The town gathers and slander ensues
Not long til she’s cursed, not long til she’s through
You’ve done the work of a saint, but with the devil’s hand
With cauldron gossip you pray, to restore this land
Holy and dead, holy and dead
Remember the plank?
You’ve got a tree instead
This will all be over soon
She’s melting through
But your dark clouds still remain
So grab another one without a name
Emarosa - “Pretend.Relive.Regret”
Emarosa got a giant bump when former Dance Gavin Dance singer Jonny Craig transplanted his mullet-wearing, overbearing ass into their band, and brought his unbelievable vocal talents with him. You pretty much can’t read anything about either band without copious amounts dedicated to praising and damning the kid’s name, so I’ll keep it brief: “TAILORED SHEETS!!!”
Their first record with Jonny Craig, 2008’s Relativity, went head to head with the new Dance Gavin Dance self-titled, and ended up going somewhat awry. The instrumental parts sounded like they’d been written prior to Craig’s entrance into Emarosa, resulting in songs that mostly sounded like Superman ad libbing over Circa Survive wannabes. The jigsaw pieces just didn’t quite fit together as beautifully as they could.
Here, on the Emarosa self-titled, the songs are the Iron Man to Craig’s Man of Steel vocals, and the square pegs are rounded off enough to fit. In essence, it sounds more like they wrote the record together this time, instead of letting Jonny overshadow the rest of the band completely.
The band’s sound is actually still quite close to Circa Survive: a dense, gritty fuzzscape supported with distant delay sirens, confident and varied percussion, and quasi-orchestral sensibility with the rock band format, creating an absolutely huge sound. With Craig in the mix, and presumably writing the “angsty notebook” style lyrics, Emarosa’s songs are inarguably anthemic.
Is this all a game?
I hate that you see me this way.
I am followed, I am lost.
Where I go, I’ll never know.
‘cause it takes a while to stop waiting up,
To get over the need.
Your loss, wasting time with you.
But I’ll take a life for you,
To spend my life with you.
And in the end,
you always leave.
RIBS is self-produced, self-promoted hard rock from Boston, MA, and a stellar example of adept music PR in 2010-2011. Lead singer/player/producer Keith Freund wisely gave his band the reddit bump after “five songs took five years,” and it paid off, becoming one of the highest rated music posts of all-time on that site.
This EP is my first release, and it practically destroyed me. I started writing the songs in late 2005. In March 2009, I put a band together and started recording with them DIY-style. I spent somewhere between 1,000 and 1,200 hours on the production process–especially tweaking the mixes–over the course of a year. Then my drummer emailed me this story about the makers of Duke Nukem and why they never finished their sequel. After spending a few days trying convince myself that my situation was different, I decided to pull the trigger and commit to a deadline at all costs. I spent all my savings and maxed out my credit card to take several months off from work and finish mixing (I’m self-employed). By then I’d lost most of my friends (always too busy to see them), was eating take out and convenience store food 7 days a week (too busy to shop), and had developed an immunity to Red Bull (too busy to go to sleep before 7 AM). Today, the burden is lifted. Here it is in all its imperfection or overperfection. I hope some of you get something from this.
Shades of bands like Failure or Queens of the Stone Age crop up in the five songs of British Brains, and certainly harder-edged anthems like “Brains Out” get the blood pumping more directly, but “Queen of Hearts” is a more brooding number which serves as a perfect exit track. It clops along on a foreboding, stereo-panned, buzzing tremolo, building anxiety for what seems like an eternity (nearly two minutes). Eventually, a spare drum hit signals that something’s about to snap, and it does. Think of the vocal hook of Pink Floyd’s “Run Like Hell,” but on guitar—a madman conductor stabbing the air on cue for each bent guitar sigh, a monster rising from the operating table. Such a simple riff, but so astonishingly effective at conveying the speedball of emotions contained in this track.
You can listen to all of British Brains, as well as their new 2-song EP Locrian Singles on bandcamp.