V/A - The Moment of Truth: The Emo Diaries Chapter 3
It's interesting how sometimes the more you listen to something, the less annoying it gets. This has
certainly been the case with The Moment of Truth, Deep Elm's most recent compilation of all that is
Last week I reviewed K-Tel's cash-in compilation on emo, Nowcore! That comp had a dozen great songs
by a dozen great bands. Unfortunately, they were all previously released. This week's comp is only
slightly different. 15 songs, most of them previously unreleased, and all by bands virtually unproven
to have lasting value. While Nowcore! will go down as a slight joke among scenesters, the songs on
that album will undoubtedly be the impetus for many of our acquaintances to get involved with the
music. Remember that mix tape you promised your little brother you'd make when you went away to
school? Nowcore! is that tape. It's not likely that The Moment of Truth will have that lasting value,
but some of these bands will undoubtedly go onto big things, and maybe even to an eventual inclusion
on the inevitable Nowcore! 2.
Although this is the third volume of the Emo Diaries series, it's only the second I've heard. I owned
the first one for awhile, and saved it primarily for the Jimmy Eat World and Samiam songs. Then one
day I had to do laundry. Don't get me wrong, I like the rock, but I also like the clean clothes. So
when I was forced to choose between the two...well, you know, 3 bucks does 2 and a half loads!
From looking at the back of this CD I couldn't tell at first which column contained the band names
and which column contained the song titles. One column had things like "The Saddest Girl Story,"
"Biblical Proof of UFOs," and "Last Days of April." The other had such gems as "VW Keychain," "One
Thousand Directinos," and "The Right Hand Rule." Which was which? Fortunately, I recognized a few
of the bands on here -- Planes Mistaken For Stars, Cross My Heart, and Sweep the Leg Johnny.
Armed with the knowledge of who was playing what, I now enter into this review.
The comp gets off to a kind of weak start with Starmarket's lame alternative song. Things pick up
when Planes Mistaken For Stars rock my ass. Then I realize it's an album track, and I already own
the album, so I don't have any reason to like this comp yet. Penfold come on next and grace me with
a nice, melodic, poppy emo song. Not at all Texas is the Reason. I like Penfold. Tell me more!
About right now I am wishing my CD player had a remote control, as the player is located across the
room, and I am sick of getting up to skip tracks. Anyway, the next song is by the Saddest Girl
Story. Musically, it's not abominable, but the vocals suck really bad. They sound kind of snotty,
but they are often flat. Now I am into bizarre vocal stylings, screechings, whatever, but a voice
that comes across as flat unintentionally just sucks. Excuse me while I walk across the room.
Next up is Cross My Heart, with a nice catchy rhythm that had me playing air guitar as I walked
back. Again, the vocals don't do much for me, but I probably wouldn't leave the room if these guys
were opening up for a band I liked. Sounding very much out of place is Sweep the Leg Johnny, with
their usual discordant, somewhat jazzy math rock. It's not my favorite song ever, but I'll take it
over the last two tracks any day!
Okay, so I'm returing to this review after like a 90 minute departure. In these 90 minutes I went
to my old apartment and moved my roommate's couch to my porch. It's going to kick so much ass out
there. Also, I'm on my second coffee mug of wine.
What I wanted to say, is that the first couple times I listened to this CD it seemed like at MOST
there was one good song on here for every crappy song. That said, the more I listen to this, the
more I enjoy the majority of it. There are crappy songs on here, but what compilation can escape
that? All in all, I'd say this comp is pretty decent. I wouldn't pay retail for it, but if you
can get it used for 5 bucks, pick it up. Or if you see one of the bands on here touring, and you
enjoy their set, pick this up, along with the ubiquitous 7".
Oh, by the way, that Planes Mistaken For Stars CD kicks some major ass. I just put it on again.
Yeah. Rock out.
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