Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

Estrela

July 26, 2003

Read: www.mp3.com/estrela
Listen: www.mp3.com/estrela
Buy: N/A (full album available at above address)

I feel like being blunt. Estrela is a band of many vocal styles. They have breathy, nearly whispered vocals, which are good for the most part, normal singing, which is grainy, nasal and bad, and screaming, which is pretty good. To open their demo, Estrela uses a dreamy, flowing playing style on “Blurred”. Fast vocals are breathed over the mid-tempo instruments until late in the song, when the other two vocal styles appear. This is easily the best song on the demo. A hooky, bright intro leads us into the harder song “Passive”, which features a good bass line and great solo. The vocals are terrible, probably the worst on the album here. “Rivers of When” starts out with a metal styled riff and screaming, but falls back into singing after a couple seconds. It showcases the guitar style of the first song, but with a harder edge. The background vocals have some promise here. Ending the demo is a song appropriately titled “Closure”. With a great guitar riff, and the best sung vocals on the album, this is a highlight. The bridge is really good as well, with guitar, bass, and drums showing off their chops.

Estrela as an instrumental band would rule. The guitar playing here is inventive and interesting, the bass lines are complicated, and the drums do a great job of complimenting both. On the downside, the vocals need some serious refining, but there is hope for them. Try again next time, as a pop bottle cap would say. 6 out of 10.

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Stephen Carradini and friends write reviews of bands that are trying to make the next step in their careers.

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