Monday, February 18, 2008

The Old Soul - s/t

All music must have a purpose. Whether it is to inform, rebel, proclaim love, deliver hate, let loose angst, or just to have fun, there is an intention that lies at the heart of every great band.

After repeated listens of their self titled record, I am convinced that The Old Soul is a band with no purpose at all. Each song jumps styles and genres without explanation. It sounds as if the 10 person band were let loose in the high school band room and this is what popped out after 48 hours of no sleep, and plenty of hallucinogenic drugs.

Anyone who tries to find any sort of meaning in the lyrics of frontman Luca Maoloni is in for an uphill battle. Anyone who can find purpose or meaning in such lyrical gems as “Take that jackknife to the protein shake, I know you same. You bleed through your eyes like the first one fallen over” deserves the Nobel Prize for code-breaking. Perhaps it’s just me, but I have trouble relating to lines such as “And it don’t cost much when you’re made of spades. You’ll eat out of the freezer.”

Distorted punk power chords in one song are traded for mariachi horns in the next. Accordions swap with harpsichord. Piano does the tango with synthesizer and an entire saxophone section. Vibraphone and violin run amok. Sound clips of chickens are morphed inside-out. I may have heard a spaceship, but it seems doubtful. On the other hand it wouldn’t surprise me in the least.

Perhaps the purpose of this record is to completely confuse the listener. If that was The Old Soul’s aim, then bravo, hey hit it right out of the park. Whether or not that constitutes good music is for you to decide.


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