Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

Seldon Plan Review

November 1, 2007

The Seldon Plan- The Collective Now

www.theseldonplan.com, www.myspace.com/theseldonplan

Magnatune Records (www.magnatune.com)

Indie-pop that will move your hips to the jig and bring you back to the good ol’ days of when whining was an acceptable way of expression.

The Seldon Plan’s new CD, The Collective Now, leaves one with a feeling of disappointment. With a band that could progress farther, it is saddening to feel no sign of this in the 11 tracks of their sophomore effort.

I could predict exactly how the songs would change because there seems to be a formula to creating cute, dance indie-pop, and if anything the band excels in making a record of just that.

“Dance, Despite the Obvious” has a ringing of Death Cab for Cutie behind it, like it was the offspring of Transatlaticism. The songs range from giddy pop tunes to serious guitar trances and whispered singing. I even had to turn the volume up to hear what this guy was sad about, poor thing.

Although the songs like “Seraphim” pick up the tempo, they are feet from impressing because of immaturity in the style. Any band can bust out a doo-wop, but are they remembered ten, or even five years after? Not likely.

When a band releases their sophomore album one expects a certain standard. The band either becomes too commercial or wows their fans with something amazing.

Not Lame, a publication, said “The Seldon Plan employs the kind of pop-rock that all the indie kids are craving”. Exactly to the point. The Seldon Plan’s music is for those who still have that spark of innocence that youth gives. Unfortunately, they could benefit from maturing themselves. In “Saint Barbaras” they claim “we’re stuck here in the suburbs”. Maybe the band should travel outside of their comfort zone and take in the experience of moving forward, not running in place.

There is, however, a glimmer of hope. The last track, “Oella”, strikes me as something that could distinguish The Seldon Plan from all the other indie rockers. Even though it was just a jam, it could later be a song that evolves the band.

Yes, the Seldon Plan has charisma and spunk. Unfortunately, as of the moment, their style isn’t unique enough to push them very far forward. But don’t put this band in the back of your mind just yet; they could be underestimated.

-Marilyse Diaz

mjork@independentclauses.com

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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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