This is a review of "Transition" recorded by All Star 69ers. The review was written by Holden DeForge in 2003.
The opening guitar induces a wince, the shaky drumbeat turns the wince into a grimace and as the vocals come in teeth grind until there's nothing but flesh. The eponymous opener of this track is a brash, shouty rock tune with a guitar riff that makes you curse Mr Fender and Mr Gibson. The production is poor, the bass way too far down in the mix; it sounds like this was a live take and the bass player was next door, the drums are not the tightest either, giving the track a disjointed feel. Some of the harmonies halfway through are a plus point but it's soon back to the raucous lead vocals that make you wish the SM58 had never been invented. Best just to move on.
"Say Goodbye" is a vast jump in style, a more funk styled acoustic driven track. The vocals here are far better and the harmonies add greatly to the texture of the song. The band are pretty adept at adding stops, middle 8's and other inflections within their tracks although perhaps it's overdone sometimes and tunes could be a little shorter. The vocal melody skips along and the gentle vocals give a sensitivity and touch of grace to proceedings, sorely lacking in the opening track. At times it does wander off into "art-wankery" though. Not sure if that's a phrase but if you use it I want royalties. Basically too much of a good thing can be bad for you and sometimes you need to know when to keep things subtle and avoid throwing things in for the sake of it.
This release ends with "Three Minute Rock Song" which could be titled "Three Minutes Of My Life That I'll Never Get Back Again". Some ill advised attempts at falsetto backing vocals don't quite work and again we're treated to just about every rock cliche going from 'humorous banter at the end of the track to pick slides down the neck of the guitar.
There's some nice ideas in there in places but it's harnessing those and doing away with those "this would sound ace" moments that is much needed.