Neon Sounds - Music To Die By

Bill Cummings 10/06/2004

Rating: 3/5

Bolton's Neon sounds come from the same school as kinesis but have taken a totally different approach to their music there's is a brand of progressive rock heavily influenced by the seventies and modern alternative sounds. This kind of progressive sound is a question of taste really at times it can be thrilling as depicted by a great rock song like "Made for me" all passionate chorus's, guitar riffs, and pianos, its an enjoyable romp. Elsewhere "Ascension" sounds like something tool would have made in their early years all ghoulish lyrics and bass heavy rhythms it is let down occasionally but some of the blunt and angry lyrics for example "you tried to fuck me over/but now I'm fucking you." The problem with a lot of progressive rock for me is that the tracks simply last too long, that it can become self indulgent this is seen by the eight minutes of the three part novel that contains three or four musical ideas good enough to be songs in their own right( for example the infectious melody of "Walk on By") but ends up collapsing under its own pomposity.

"So Beautiful is a decent song rock song with a nice atmospheric sound and jazzy feel, its only let down by some of its cheesy lyrics. "Blow My mind" is a good rock song sounding not unlike an early nineties rock track its backed by piano riffs and a topped by a neat vocal, as the singer Chris Shepard deals with a relationship going sour. Last track "The Rain falls" starts off sounding like a torch rock ballad, but reveals itself to be a splendid piece of balladry "Ill die without you near me/I need you here tonight/ You and me can be forever."

Overall quite a good album with a very accomplished sound, a few points though Neon sounds could improve their vocals in places and some of their lyrics do lapse into the realm of cheesiness at times.