ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
Do You Imagine Things?
Alfie earns an “A” for effort. The songs sample long-dead genres
and are elaborately layered. The result is a cluttered, irritating and over-compressed
mix of sounds. It’s like eating a salad that could be delicious, but
has too many strange vegetables and has been sitting in the sun for hours.
The song “Stuntman” revisits the a cappella harmonies of Queen,
stirring in undertones of ’70s folk and ’80s glam rock.
“Winding Road” is more consistent, with an upbeat rhythm.
“No Need” begins with syncopated, warped banjoes and cars starting
while “Molluse” is a creepy Gregorian chant/marching band piece.
The epic song “My Blood Smells Like Thunderstorms” is peppered
with tambourine but feels like the exhausted end of a five-year-old’s
birthday party or melting carnival music.
—Dallas Curow and Meghan Hart
A Snow Capped Romance
Have you ever noticed that regardless of what metal rockers are singing about,
they usually sound like they’re just yelling? 36 Crazyfists are not a
band to shy away from stereotypes, laying down 11 cacophonous, migraine-inducing
tracks on their new album, A Snow Capped Romance.
The band is comprised of Brock Lindow on vocals, Steve Holt on guitar and
back-up vocals, Mick Whitney on bass and someone called “T” on
Lindow, who writes all the songs, has been quoted as saying the tracks are
a “romance with people, places and situations.”
Surprisingly, when the band mellows in some songs, the vocals are actually
quite good and the instruments very distinct. Unfortunately, this sanity doesn’t
last long, and soon enough, it’s right back to the usual pandemonium.
Sometimes a band is just too versatile to be confined to one genre,
and with Snow Patrol, nothing could be closer to the truth. The
British quartet was not happy with being known simply as another
British rock band, so they branched out to include an American
Snow Patrol is made up of vocalist and utility man Gary Lightbody,
guitarist Nathan Connolly, bassist and keyboardist Mark McClelland
and drummer Jonny Quinn. Together, these boys have put out a unique
But despite the band’s unique sound, every song sounds exactly
the same. They blend so much that if the gaps between the songs
were shorter, it’s not likely anyone would notice there are
actually 12 tracks on the CD (which ironically concludes with a
song titled “Same”).
Overall, anyone short of a die-hard fan will find this album disappointing.
Get ready to sweat — this one is hot! Mixdown 2004 burns
an eternal flame; it literally never stops.
A powerful, riveting meltdown of past and present music, this
CD resurrects old favourites and lets the music, not the words,
tell the story. Hints of familiar songs tease the listener, then
disappear only to re-enter the mix moments later in a bigger, better
Elements of disco, rock and rap fuse in a musical composition
reminiscent of Blade Runner. Smooth and well-integrated song fragments
unify into a high-energy musical: “I just wanna get better...
everything I do, I do it for you... you can dance if you want to...
if you can’t dance... you’re no friend of mine... is
this burning an eternal flame... all the leaves are brown and the
sky is gray... ”
And finally, the hypnotic “Your body, my body, everybody
love your body... ” will make you wanna dance.
—Mary Anne Pucovski