More and more
are trying to combine Electronica and traditional Rock instruments,
often with the intent of exploring new territories. The danger and the
challenge at the same time are to maintain an easy listening and a catchiness
for every track in order to gift each of them with a special personality.
In this case the bet has been won by this one-man project self-catapulted
onto the scene all of a sudden and are most likely destined to stay
in that for a long while.
The claustrophobic beats, cries, voices and rapidly growing noises of
the title track make us understand it won't be a pleasant journey with
a happy end, even if the light out of the tunnel appears every now and
then. And this is confirmed by tracks such as "Blackout",
Industrial Rock full of DJ effetcts on the trail of the most abrasive
NIN, strengthened by Ministry's riffs and a Clutch/H-Blockxian
marked Rock groove in the refrain bringing brightness to this nightly
"Misled" plays alternating Tommy Lee and Muse, adding
hypnotical vocals together with other whispered tenebrous ones. Thrills
are gonna run up and down your spine like the first time you had your
first sexual experience, devirginizing new areas of your brain cortex.
A song like "Reflection" reminds the rainiest Anathema
and Pink Floyd, mixing them with electronic beats and lots of wha-wha,
but there are also episodes with hardly any Rock elements: "Scapegoat"
for example, a romantic, deviated, almost completely Chill-out/Lounge
music song with only few sampled guitars making tempo circles in the
A bit a là Radiohead, "KIll You off", later
blows up in slow Emocore/Nu Metal paroxystical bursts.
The force of James Garrett's songwriting resides in the ineffability
of the refrains and in the smooth pain-free fusion of cinemascopic tempo
changes; actually this music is suitable for several movies, but I would
see it particularly well in a flick like Darren Aronofsky's "Pi",
especially if you take as a reference a song like the magic and mesmerizing
"Fire"; take Burzum's guitars (yeah, Count Grishnack!),
others mutuated by Godflesh, EBM beatings dear to Wumpscut and similar
ones, melodic, looped, effected or menacious vocals with multiple assorted
noises and a symphonic part chosen to conclude the composition and you'll
not be far from guessing what's expecting you here.
As I said, many are the influences but the band remains one sui generis:
hard for a great deal of reviewers is the task of describing the following
"My Dream": in my opinion an orgy between Atari Teenage
Riot, Clawfinger, Ministry again, New Wave and Alec Empire as for the
Melancholy and bucolic, "The Ruins of Interest" ranges
from Pink Floyd to Linkin' Park with a violin and Pop/AOR vocals astride
Howard Jones, Billy Idol and Dakota with low-fi Metal strokes of the
guitar. Abso-fucking-lutely immense!
World charts can be achieved thru "Until That Day",
but altho I like it, I must admit this song is a bit inferior in comparison
with the rest of the material; too simple beats, too short and less
artistic than the others, but believe me, I am splitting hairs.
A tremendous impact comes back with the closer, "All That Was",
an apparent crossbreed between the atmospheres and the pumping of Deftones
and the perversity of Marylin Manson remixed by a Disc Jockey high on
acid who put on a platter by Sigue Sigue Sputnik and one by Police on
another turntable. Unfortunately there are no lyrics but the downloadable
video corresponding to this song is a plain exposé of how easily
huge strata of population were, are and always will be easily manipulated
after a leader's promises. I don't understand why some people think
Mr. Garrett states his views here: you can see Hitler, but you can also
see Charles Manson and the nth intolerant iman indoctrinating millions
of muslims, so it's just a warning for those few who can still read
between the lines spurring not to follow any leader but use that grey
matter that was given to us not only for self-survival or fun. Whoever
your heads of state, community, church, sect, and so forth are, you're
being lied most of the time or something is hidden to meet the agenda.
In conclusion, the album is valid and it has to be cataloged as one
of those to discover and enjoy from second by second. The homage to
art delivered by the 11 tracks makes our asses feel a tad sorry for
promoting this self-financed debut-CD with some delay. The target of
this record, admitted and not taken for granted it exists, is quite
wide but can be summed up like this: an album for open-minded individuals
who love diverse sources of Modern music with a soul and not only a
background while doing something else. If he should ever listen to it,
David Icke would naturally become an adept to Only Now Existing too.
MARKUS GANZHERRLICH - 2nd December, 2006