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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Prowler - Communizzle

Name: Prowler
Album: Communizzle
Year: 2006
Style: Electro/Punk, Party Rock, Indie, "Dinosaur Thump"
Similar Bands: Gil Mantera's Party Dream, LCD Soundsystem, Of Montreal, Dismemberment Plan
"One-Word" Review: Prince-Wannabe-Party-Rawk
Based Out Of: Philadelphia, PA
Label: Self Produced
 Communizzle - Cover, CD, Tray
Communizzle - Back, Center Liner Notes
Communizzle (2006)
  1. World Domination 4:02
  2. Pretty Bird 2:39
  3. Us Huh Yeah 2:18
  4. Prowler Theme 3:27
  5. Fresh 2:22
  6. Keep It Bubblin 2:37
  7. You're A Freak 3:37
  8. Nancy 3:26
  9. Poison Ivy 5:43
Album Rating (1-10): 4.5

Members & Other Bands:
Keith Warren Greiman - Vox
Mike Staszeski - Bass
Ryan Kerrigan - Guitar, Drums
MPT
Darren Blase - Mastering, Producer
Keith Andrew Shore - Rantings and Drawlings

Unknown-ness: I've never heard of this band, or maybe I've seen their name playing a show in the area, but I don’ know them at all, or know their style. From the cover, it seems like it will be some sort of garage-indie, self-proclaimed, heavy thinker album on intricate production. The artwork lends me to this idea. Also, apparently the CD is a ripped copy, but is done “semi-professionally" with a full artwork sticker on top of the tell-tale marine blue burned disc bottom. Without a record label, I only assume this was self-produced and distributed/sold.

Album Review: Apparently I was wrong about my ideas of what this band is. They are more party rock with simple electro samples and hooks. The singer is more into his cartoon-like weird art than the band,, and I can’t figure out if the album cover art is his (Keith Greiman), his alias, or a different person with a similar style. They are still a band, so they could still be out playing here in Philly.

“World Domination” starts with a gloomy piano and party cheers from the singer. The song kicks n with a noisy, tinny party beat, and crazy energy in the vocals, which are more like shout-cheering syllables rather than singing. The gloomy synth and keyboard filters in from the background during the wall of sound verse, and is much more prevalent in the musical breaks, joined by party cheers. It’s pretty repetitive, but in a solid, good way. The end of the song gets real quiet, winding down with synth hand claps and whispered vocals.
“Pretty Bird” is a twittering, down scale note section, and the singing is basically white rapping. There are musical breaks, giving a little electronic keyboard section, stopping the momentum of the tinny guitar and energetic singing. There is a catchy guitar hook buried down below some muddy synth rhythmic effects, and then the song shifts over to glass bottle percussion to end the song.
“Us Huh Yeah” has a simplified Digital Underground style bass and drum beat. The energy in this party rock song comes off as annoying to me, with the over play of the whoooooo’s, which would even embarrass Ric Flair. The electric guitar is more jangely in this song.
“Prowler Theme” has a kick drum rhythm, with short Hey-Ho vocals. The falsetto singing over revving guitars offers a balance of emotion and metal. The vocals are again, party rock emotionally shouted over the thick guitars, and they remind me, especially with the overused inflections of the voice, and a bit of nervous jitteriness, like Early Dismemberment Plan. But in a bad way.

“Fresh” starts with a record scratch, and it takes on a funky vibe, with vocals of liking white women/girls, and that the singer, over confidently, says, in his best falsetto, he’ll fuck them good. It is like a nerdy attempt to be Prince, and it doesn’t even come close to being a parody: Just a cheap attempt. Some odd synth effect are chosen to end the song, that don’t really fit into the rest of the track, but add cohesion to the rest of the album.
“Keep It Bubblin” begins with a simple drum and scratch beat, and the title of the song is repeated over and over to the rhythm. Swipes and other electronic effects are added, and the song progresses into a bit of a rap. It retreats to the original hook, which is not that strong, and is very underdeveloped. As the song moves forward, a ringing effect is added, and the song manipulates the previous hook in a different way, and bny the time the song ends, it feels like the band just abandoned the track.
“You're A Freak” starts with the party vocals and rhythmic strumming, and is followed with a funky bass line. Again the idea of Prince is employed, albeit, not well, (like they are trying to be Ween trying to be Prince), and the song just moves forward with the one note guitar, and side stomping bass. The song title is sung through a mechanical larynx, as a call to the singer’s response, and it is this voice that fades out as the song ends.
“Nancy” is very annoying with the way his vocals go monotone and raise like a hen when he sings Nancy. The space-age swiping synth effects are nice addition to this party song, but the calling vocals of the chorus are tough to get over. There is evena slight middle-eastern vibe to the end of the song, with the guitar and flute-synth effects creating a sort of world rhythm.
“Poison Ivy” starts with a single slow drum beat, like the dinosaurs coming in Jurassic park, and a skittering crickets. A cymbal is added, followed by a echoey door knock, and this is beginning to sound like an industrial song. A single note bass rhytm is added, as is an electric fuzzy guitar, and the song takes a gloomy shape, not unlike the first track. At 1:45, the song takes a turn into an in-the-round singing of Poison Ivy with tribal drums in the background. All the elements continue once the instrumental verse picks up and the song just goes into a jam session of electronic sounds, only briefly coming back to the poison ivy “chorus” vocals. The last 30 second of the song are vocals chanted like they are conducting some dark, sacrificial ceremony of poison ivy. The short guitar hook and door knocking effect wind the song, and album down with a fade out.


This album was easy to have on as backing music while I did not pay attention to it for a while, but once I really listened to it, I did not become a fan.

Stand Out Track: World Domination

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