CD REVIEW: Imposter Syndrome - Rose Colored Sabatoge
By Cyrus Rhodes - 11/30/2009 - 11:16 AM EST
Artist: Band: Imposter Syndrome
Album: Rose Colored Sabatoge
Genre: Alt Pop/Rock
Sounds Like: Alannah Myles, Linda Rondstadt
Technical Grade: 9/10
Production/Musicianship Grade: 10/10
Commercial Value: 5/10
Overall Talent Level: 8/10
Songwriting Skills: 7/10
Performance Skill: 8/10
Best Songs: Black, One Sugar
Weakness: Noone Spiked the Punch!
Imposter syndrome can be defined as a collection of feelings of inadequacy that persist even in face of information that indicates otherwise. It is experienced internally as chronic self-doubt, and feelings of intellectual fraudulence. Some common feelings and thoughts that might characterize the imposter syndrome are: “I feel like a fake” In 2009 4 piece New York band Imposter Syndrome releases it’s 5 song EP entitled Rose Colored Sabotage. My hats off not only to the individual who named the band, but to the individual who named this EP as well.
The EP logs on at just over 17 minutes, and kicks things off with “Black, One Sugar” a sassy intro piece that delivers cool vocal harmonies via the standard 4 piece rock delivery. From the start you will hear a solid rock-vibe with just a dash of blues. Track 2 “ Plastic Wrap” shows solid musicianship across the board with impressive guitar work from Josh Weisberg laying down his solo touches against the driving rhythm. This band delivers solid low end rock grooves, with Impressive harmonies, musical peaks and valleys, and creative flowing and ebbing. Vocalist Kristin Persinos lays it down with her impressive bluesy-type rock persona. She pushes the natural accents well, and delivers a voice that sits well within the pocket, and is pleasing to the ear. Track 3: "Rose Colored Sabotage" and Track 4: "Waterfall" delivers more of the same rock-type blues groove, with cool slide guitar, and Alannah Myles type vocal mystique and seduction.
I guess my biggest complaint about this EP is I wished it pushed me a whole lot harder than it did. It feels like a trip to the dentist office. I mean I want the guitar to hit me right between the eyes sometimes. I want the messages of the songs to leave me absolutely speechless. But more than anything I really, really, really, really want to hear vocalist Kristen Persinos just nail me to the wall with her emotions kind of like Courtney Love would do. I mean if you’re a rock band you got to let it all hang out there, especially vocally – this is not a dress rehearsal, it’s your music, and you’re a rock band! At times the songs lack serious emotional delivery, and seem a bit conservative. If Kristen would scream every now and again, well that would point the EP in the right direction, giving it more of a jagged edge. Throughout this EP her emotions seem a bit controlled, and way to choreographed. Unfortunately genuine emotion cannot be controlled. If this EP was sex, it would be way too mechanical. I swear the final track: “Get to the Point” almost sounds like Linda Rondstat. or vintage Motels. If it was 1980, Imposter Syndrome would have a 50/50 chance of starting a riot among teenagers. Unfortunately it’s 2009 – come on show me some real attitude! Kristen - If this paragraph makes your blood boil then you should go write a song about right now!
Don’t get me wrong, the EP does not qualify for a coaster by any means. What it lacks for in blood curling emotion, and raw substance it makes up for in solid production value. I mean the guitar playing is hot, the musicianship across the board is pretty solid. The bands lays down a solid groove together. The music possesses a lot of variety, peaks and valleys. It was obviously mixed and mastered to industry standard. But not so fast – good music reviews aren’t that easy, you got to got to show me more than that! Imposter Syndrome elects to drive home safely on this EP, and delivers a solid, consistent 5 songs catalogue that is entertaining, pleasing to the ear, and full of flair. But don’t expect to have your ass handed to you, or be blown away by its message. Its strength – clearly its production value that is very consistent with music that has its moments. But its weakness - it misses the mark completely when it comes to the sheer heart stopping emotional impact. If I could say anything to Imposter Syndrome right now it would be don’t be afraid to offend a few people with your music, and bring just a little more attitude to the table. You guys have a great sound, now spike the punch! Just a little bit of this would go a long way I know it’s in there somewhere – now set it free. The real selling point for any song is the (singer to listener) emotional delivery/connection. Here experienced artists will execute and make the connection. It cannot be faked and has to be totally genuine and from the heart. At the end of the day people don't buy plastic and paper, they buy emotions. This is the ultimate thing I look for when evaluating a song - does it push me over the edge, or does it feel more like a trip to the parent teacher conference. Does the emotion stop you dead in your tracks? Or are you trying to slap people with a wet noodle? Rock music has always been about starting a riot, and not caring what people think about it. Instead of taking any serious risks, this EP play it safe - kind of like, well Sabotage via Rose Colored Glasses.
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