Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

Motion Picture Demise

November 1, 2003

There are some bands who have the high-brow aura around them. The lyrics, the music, the stage presence just all emanates the “I’m better than you”. There are others who give off the “I’m just like you, so let’s rock together” feel. Motion Picture Demise feels like the latter, and that’s a good thing.

The guitars set the stage for this band. Guitars are always the feature that distinguishes between highbrow and ‘working-man’s emo’. MPD’s are clanging, gritty, tough, and have a unique style that is accented throughout the album. The style is best shown on the opener “Wings of Fallen Hope”. The vocals are intense, and the guitars complement that, keeping their frenetic sound going under the vocals at all times. The singer has a smooth, fixated voice, accommodating well to harmony, which they use sparingly but well. To make their sound even more intense, the singer is complimented by a screamer. He is used pretty often, but not in overkill. They try many styles of music throughout this album, but each has an underlying bed of dark emo. While they have shining moments in nearly every song, they sound best when they are playing…. dark emo! Their attempts at punk/emo and melodic emo just don’t come off as well as their ferocity. This could be because of their lyrics, which are dark, paranoid, and eerie, even in the happier songs. The best exemplification of MPD style would definitely be “Wings of Fallen Hope.” Also excellent is the third track, “How to Scale A Mountain”, although it features some odd vocals.

Their guitar work is inventive when they play fast, dark, and hard. Otherwise, it’s just blah. This means they should play fast, dark, and hard a lot more. They do get points for experimenting with other genres, but on their next release, their best material should be highlighted. If the light stuff gets better or the dark stuff increases volume, they will be awesome. This good debut proves there is a bright future for these dark guys.




Stephen Carradini and Lisa Whealy write reviews of instrumental, folk, and singer/songwriter music. We write about those trying to make the next step in their careers and established artists.

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