CD REVIEW: Model A - Transmission Lost
By Steve Allat - 10/24/2004 - 11:46 PM EDT
Artist: Band: Model A
Album: Transmission Lost
For Fans Of: Radiohead, the movie Velvet Goldmine, (old) Genesis
Fav Tracks: Chimera, Telling, A Wasted Line.
Once I got past the vocals reminding me quite a bit of Liam Gallagher (of Oasis), I settled in for the ride. Into the past. Into space. Into the space between.
Model A will remind you instantly of a lot of progressive rock from across the pond.
Their apparent goal is to produce music that combines electronic sensibility and heavy classic rock inspired grooves.
Overall the sound they put forth could be described as ethereal, spacey and relaxed while pushing towards heavy at the same time. Despite how much is going on, it really does remain relaxing to listen to, working either if you're paying strict attention or have it floating around in the background.
Lead vocalist Brandon Schilling's elevated tenor does a great job of cutting through and above the varied music which fittingly balances him out by providing the bottom end.
Sonically, the keys sound a bit dated at times, as does the drum kit. Otherwise the sound approaches being modern and full, which is how I'd want to hear them, and how they would sound and succeed best.
Overall, the set is somewhat repetitive - there just were not enough hooks for me to pick up a major difference between the tunes, some of which were fairly long (in fine progressive rock style). I did really enjoy some of the shorter parts within tunes (like near the end of 'We All Die Young'), where the guys show their versatility and ability at switching styles, pace and volume to change the mood of a song. It seems to me that I hear enough great music in there, it's just a bit too much to appreciate all at once. Maybe a little simplification is the answer amidst all the sound & talent.
The recording is also a bit muddled, which I think really hurts (appreciation of) all of the performances, because if I try to follow one instrument, what is being done is very interesting and well performed. I'm curious enough to want to keep listening for more.
In the end, I had to listen to the CD several times through to appreciate it all, as there is a lot going on. It's almost aural overdose, and it gets better with repeated listens. You could actually put it on repeat and think there are more than 6 songs here - a great illusion and a complement to their ability to keep you guessing despite the sameness of the overall sound.
Just bring some of those sounds out of the past Model A, and I'll be waiting to hear more.
Website: Model A Music
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