Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

Keane Li

September 11, 2003

Keane Li is a one man rock band. He specializes in the darker, aggressive aspects of rock while tinting everything with a melodic strain that usually comes through in the vocals. Sound confusing? Read on…

This album is a rock album. Granted, there are other things here (including two very good acoustic songs), but his best work is totally rocked out. It’s fast, it’s rocky, but it’s never particularly hard because his vocals are very melodic. His voice that can come off as whiny or well placed, depending on the range and use for that particular song, though. In easier terms, songs with good vocals and songs with bad vocals fluctuate throughout the album. All but one of these songs is pulled off in low-fi setting, which contributes to the inconsistent vocals. It also puts an interesting feel to his dark and moody songs, while creating an odd, almost undercooked feel to his happier rock. He likes to make his songs long…most over four minutes and some over five. Some bands can pull this off with a liberal dose of variation, but Li uses the time to repeat things he’s already sung or played. He also tosses in guitar solos (in a very Seventies fashion) which appear throughout the album and are a scattered bunch of hits and misses. He does feature some songs that have all the parts in place, like “Red”, which would be a commanding rock song if it weren’t low-fi (It’s still great anyway), and “Beautiful People”, which isn’t just complimented by me. It won Online Rock Festival’s Category of Original Song.

Keane Li has the thing some bands envy: talent. It’s hidden in the fuzz and extraneous noise that’s trapped in low-fi recordings, but it’s there. If you’re willing to look, you’ll find some good music here. It won’t blow your mind (see Glori-H), but it will keep you interested well.

Read: www.keane.zoson.net

Listen: www.mp3.com/keane_li

Buy: N/A (whole album available at above address)

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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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