|Beyond The Reach of the Flame|
Well, in the past, back when music was in stores, and not on Amazon.com, but the principle is really still the same.
For me, there are a few tells that make me want to listen to an album. When I check out a new record, it's typically a promo so I can bring all the best in new music to you.
So, I look at the promo photos, check the record label because most of them aren't sent from the labels directly, and look closely at their gear.
In this instance, you'll see that the band photo doesn't contain any guitars or amps, but it's a black and white noir photo in a desolate field. You could probably safely assume that their gear wasn't what caused me to bend my ear today....
That can be either sound or appearance.
So, MICAWBER, a death metal band from the wilds of Green Bay are on Prosthetic Records. That's always enough to catch my eye.
This cadre of Green Bay gents have been slogging it out via the DIY route for a decade. This is something else that makes me interested. Independent artists make the purist art, both for good and ill to put it all out there on the table....
So, MICAWBER has everything I typically look for in a new band. They're on a label I know and love. They play a genre of music that I really dig. Couple that with they've been doing it all on their own for a decade.
When the first track, Full Denim Jacket, started playing, honestly, it was underwhelming. It's a track that's brutal for the sake of brutal. The vocals were akin to dogs barking incoherently.
This is normally the point when I move on, because there'll never been enough time to listen to all of the emails....
But something told me to go Wilson Phillips on them and hold on even though my level of disappointment was growing rapidly. This wasn't the kind of music I signed up for, but as the song was on its last legs, the guitar solo kicked in.
Let it be known out there, that a kick ass guitar solo is enough to keep my ears on your record even when the rest of the song isn't my style. Here's where things start to get a little strange. Full Devil Jacket sticks out like a sore thumb because the rest of the album is more what I'd term classic death metal.
Perhaps they were announcing their presence with authority a la Nuke LaLoosh, but that track is the only dark spot on an otherwise spectacular death metal record.
And singers out there, never underestimate the power of the guitar solo.
Genre: Death Metal
Label: Prosthetic Records