Unknown Component - Everything At Once Is Nothing All The Time

Mike Mantin 29/08/2006

Rating: 2/5

Unknown Component, essentially Iowa's Keith Lynch, clearly has lofty ambitions, as evident on the stadium-friendly songwriting on his debut, self-released album 'Everything At Once Is Nothing All The Time'. He shows a lyrical flair evident on 'Deliberation''s biting tale of drunkenness ("And now you drink to feel OK/And everyone just sounds the same") and other tales of romance and misfortune. There's only one faulty component, and unfortunately for Lynch it's a rather crucial one: the vocals are simply horrible. His tuneless growl is more suited to nu-metal than the indie template so well set-up on the other aspects of Unknown Component. Sadly, this inescapable problem ruins great choruses like opener 'In Descending Circles', which would fit snugly on a Coldplay album if Chris Martin tackled the pretty, piano-led tune.

This is a real shame, as Unknown Component have bags of potential but one overtly bad factor: the riff and chords of 'Something Unsaid' would make it a gorgeous lament, but it sadly sounds like a classic being murdered on a drunken karaoke session. This album has the songs to mark Lynch as a potential mainstream-rock contender. Indeed, when he tones it down and adds echoes on 'Only To Find', the music suddenly seems far more aesthetically pleasing. He could, perhaps, have added some quality control skills to this 8-minute track, though: it overstays its welcome by several minutes. It's flashes like these which rescue this difficult album from being dismissed as a one-star disaster, as Unknown Component are clearly capable of engaging songwriting, but when the vocals make these decent songs sound like an album of Nickelback's slow sections, we have a problem that needs urgent attention.

Unknown Component Myspace
Buy the CD at Unknown Component's website