Monday, January 02, 2006

New Electric

New Electric - s/t - Perpetual Motion Machine Label

New Electric is a 4 piece instrumental group, but don't let that scare you off! Where many instrumental bands of late have become pretentious and un-accessible (is that a word?), New Electric rise above. The newest M83 album comes to mind as pointless programmed drivel with more electronics than you can shake a stick at. And The guy is French. But we wont go there...

New Electric is composed of four guys who all have degrees in music performance, some from NYU. This definitely shows through in their songwriting chops. The 4 songs on this EP all retain somewhat traditional structures while standing out from one another completely. The use of odd time signatures such as 7/4 and 5/4 does much to keep the structures from becoming monotonous.

The music itself is a prog-rock inspired freak-out of sorts, with guitars wailing, and fuzz bass (courtesy of Oscar Rodriguez) stepping up to the plate often to carry the melodic duties. This aspect is truly creative and allows both guitarists the opportunity to lay down great textures for embellishment. The versatility of these songs speaks volumes. The first song "Surf" comes in with guns blazing. This tune has very strong forward motion, and propels relentlessly until the end. The second song "Don't Send Me Home" allows the band to explore some ambiance and spacey textures, while still maintaining a tight groove and plowing ahead. This tune is a little mellower than "Surf" but still has an intensity all its own. The ending riff calls to mind De-Loused in The Comatorium era Mars Volta (and in a good way). The third song "Bananarchy" is a flurry of eight-notes and triplets which never seems to stop punching you in the face.(and it hurts so good!) Here the band explores the time signature of 9/8 with flawless execution. Oscar's virtuosity on the bass is showcased on this tune, alongside attractive soaring guitar lines. The last, and my favorite track on the EP is "Circus" In this tune the group explodes and nothing is left held back. The last riff is the most epic of any on the disk, creating a monolith of sound. And the clincher for me is when the guitar comes in with a sort of western-esque (is that a word too?) slide solo, bringing the whole thing together and sending it off with double the strength it started at.

My only gripe is the production. The recording gets the job done, but a more clean, precise production would've gone the extra mile in my opinion. The drums sound flat, and sometimes the guitar effects are lost in the mix. But the bass cuts through brilliantly, and I thank the engineer for that!

Dont be afraid of this instrumental group, they just want to show you some good 'ol rock lovin'! They dont want to make you wait through 9 minutes of droning junk to hear the good part. They most certainly don't want to whine about how their girlfriend is a slut (aren't they all?)They dont want to burst your eardrums with drum machines and electronic blips, they want to molest you via fuzz-bass. And trust me, you'll like it!

OVERALL RATING: 8.9

1 Comments:

Blogger anvnate said...

As a bass player new electric was insane live. The bass lines alone would be enough for me to love this band. I actualy liked the raw production of their EP. If you havent listened to these guys yet, you owe it to yourself to check them out. this moment.

6:09 PM  

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