No Reply - Beneath the Manacles
Rebound Records

This is a CD from a band that will be good.  Now, I'm not saying
that they are currently without skillz however, I anticipate their next
recording will be much, much better.  As long as they find and kill the
man who recorded this one.  With an aptly titled CD, this is a band buried
beneath the manacles of a shitty recording.  They're probably a great live
band, really powerful and intense.  The recording, however, barely hints
at that. It really is a shame, but hey, I'm counting on the next one.

First things first, this is a band that relies on a good, forceful recording. They do the emo loud/soft thing which basically dictates the need for explosive changes and abrupt stops. The uncrisp recording unfortunately does not do this in the slightest. The volume, energy, and speed levels are lost in the mix. While I'm sure that in a live setting this band has no problem pulling this sound off, it comes across as weak here. The explosions are not crisp and powerful and end up making this band sound awfully average. They play a sound that is done by so many bands that they pretty much need to diferentiate themselves in any way possible, and to their discredit, I don't feel they have.
I'm confident in the musical ability and the songwriting skillz of this band. For crying out loud, this is a 6 song cd that clocks in at 40 minutes so you know that a high level of craftsmanship has gone into these songs. It's just a case of a band being killed by their producers hand. I'm waiting for the next full length.
...david smith...

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