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Monday, April 6, 2009

The Hard Tomorrows - 5 Songs

Name: The Hard Tomorrows
Album: 5 Songs
Year: 2004
Style: Emo Rock
Similar Bands: Muse, Ours, New Radicals, Radiohead
"One Word" Review: fake-caring-radio-falsetto
Based Out Of: Washington, DC
Label: self released
5 Songs - A cover, Liner Notes & Back
5 Songs - Covers & CD

5 Songs (2004)
  1. Put Yourself Out 3:39
  2. Jaywalker 3:22
  3. Dear Mary 3:05
  4. I Never Write Anyone 2:45
  5. Stay Cool / Take Down 7:40
Album Rating (1-10): 5.0

Members & Other Bands:
Rob Pierangeli - Guitar, Vox (the Glaciers)
Rishi Chakrabarty - Guitars, Harmonium
Mike Tasevoli - Drums
Paul Michel - Bass, Keys, Vox
Steve Cooper - Mix, Producer
Kyle Downes - Engineered, Producer
Alan Douches - Mastered
Sarah Claxton - Photographs
Becky Schmidt - Illustrations/Design

Unknown-ness: I’ve never heard of these guys. But I found this in a CD bin at a pawn shop out in Las Vegas, and got this for the simple, cool, bright, colorful yet dark artwork. This is just a 5 (6) song ep, but I love the bare bones layout and 3 alternate covers. The presentation sets the musical expectation to be high on the creative, witty and deep scale, so I hope the music holds up.

Album Review: So far I like this short CD, all of the songs are near or under three and a half minutes, assuming the last “hidden” track song has dead space. The EP begins with “Put Yourself Out.” Jangley guitars, echoey organ and a light drum beat start off the song. The vocals sound like they have a slight distortion added, and they are sung with controlled emotion. I can’t place who the vocals sound like, but they sound like a mish-mosh of many radio-alternative songs: part Eels and part New Radicals. It is a catchy song, but does not stand out an incredible amount. “Jaywalker” is next, and has a quietly-fuzzed shredding guitar over two notes. The fuzz is dropped and the vocals sore ala Muse or Ours. These songs really bring out the emo aspect of their music, the lead guitar is dark and brooding, and their slightly start/stop guitar work try to squeeze them into the Franz Ferdinand type rock, but it just doesn’t hold up that well. “Dear Mary” begins with a religious choir of cooing vocals. Then the guitars and drums pick up, in a complex and interesting melody, similar to the Sugarplastics. The band relies heavily on the twangy guitar and deep bass combination. The vocals are subdued, but they have the ability to soar at any second. The song unfortunately picks up with a different musical arrangement, and the vocals do become emotional, the music does not follow the transition. “I Never Write Anyone” is a loud rocking song, with plenty of drive and note-held vocals. But this is also a very noisy track, and the music suffers, except when it breaks free in support of the vocals. “Stay Cool” is the final track, but I read that it is 7+ minutes because there is a hidden mostly instrumental track following. This song is a quiet, Radiohead-ish ballad. It flows like a sea shanty waltz. The vocals are haunting, and are enhanced by echoing vocals layered deep down in the track. A buzzing period around 2:30is followed by a pick up in energy and emotion. After its climax, it settles back down before it ends at 4:05. But then, at 6 minutes, the bonus track entitled “Take Down” (thanks to Better Propaghanda’s website) begins with fuzz guitars and buzzing chords. Some emo yells are the only vocals on this wailing guitarist centerpiece. And like the quick burst that it is, it ends just as suddenly.

Stand-Out Track: Put Yourself Out

Links:

1 comment:

  1. I don't hear any similarity to Muse.

    Also, that MySpace blog post you linked to, the download links for their music no longer work.

    ReplyDelete