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This fifth track I’m going to tentatively deem my favorite from Awake In The Brain Chamber. As the track begins we hear a near New-Wave vibe coming at us once more in the form of the piano part. It just feels like a square peg trying to fit in a round hole. As if it doesn’t fit. Anyway, moving on we find Brandon trying to sing again instead of going with his gut and using his unconventionally charming timbre. Stop it, my friend! You’re not a typical singer who should feel as though he needs to bend his voice to fit into whatever ‘convention’ you’re attempting to reach. Instead, go with the flow and delivery that has always made you such a unique and interesting vocalist.
Forget my criticisms. Despite them, I’m going to hit you with a 180. This is one hell of a track. Sardonic, full of confusion and loss, Everything Starts sounds like a mythical tale of rebirth wherein the subject is not necessarily welcoming of crummy circumstances but still begins the process of acceptance.
‘Daddy’s In the Doldrums’ vibes are present thanks to the bass part conjoined with the effected vocals heard during the tracks on-set. It’s ‘contemplative droney-ness’ which spells out this songs structure. It is so reminiscent There’s many moments where I find myself forgetting again that Ben is not there. By saying that, it makes me realize I can feel however I want as far as they care, I'm sure, but for 2 dudes like Brandon and Josh (who have really been through the mud these past several years) to manage through, against all odds, to release another Secret Machines record under the same banner as when they were a 3-piece outfit oh so many moons ago must be such a breath of fresh air.
Plainly spoken - This is a GOOD RECORD !!!
However, those blocked by emotion like myself previously will never open their minds enough to hear or note this. Only once you separate this album from previous works do you realize just how much this slight departure SUITS them. If I had never heard The Secret Machines before I could see them converting me to ‘fandom’ with this LP.
A New Disaster
The pulsing drums can be heard as the compass towards reminiscence once again. I actually needed to spin this track a few times. It was so spot-on that I completely forgot about writing down my thoughts for massive chunks of it due to large amounts of silent head-bobbing. Even ME, I don’t have anything to gripe about with it. That’s saying a lot!!!
For the sake of filling space, of course I’d be interested in documenting this album had it been less than up-to-snuff. I’d have honestly ripped it to pieces and came in thinking that was the direction I was already headed.
The career - spanning fan side of me though, is so so so happy that I don’t have much to say. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this flashback to to my 20’s. In a weird way, this is a time capsule in a song.
So Far Down
As the track kicks off, I find myself entranced by the dissonant guitar. The piano and drums enter in a more ‘standard’ fashion than guitar did. This makes for a very odd, but really cool balance. Part of you deems it weird upon first intake, switching to thoughts that leave you assuming this to be generic (but still .. uncomfortable) material very quickly. Brandon breaks with any idea of this being ‘conventional’ when his unpolished and more appealing vocal methods begin. They immediately remind again of days of yore, when he would hiss and whisper into the mic effortlessly while sounding superb. This is opposed to when it's clear he is ‘really trying’ to 'sing' in a more traditional sense of the term lead singer.