Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

This Evening-s/t EP

June 1, 2006

Band Name: This Evening
Album Name: s/t EP
Best Element: Pristine vocals
Genre: Dance-rock
Website: www.thiseveningmusic.com
Label Name: n/a
Band E-mail: band@thiseveningmusic.com

The problem with most fads is that they just suck to listen to- boy bands, electroclash, techno-pop (Moby or the Chemical Brothers, for instance). They just don’t have any staying power after you’re over the infatuation. But one of the more recent fads is problematic: dance-rock is a heck of a lot of fun to listen to. Other fads die to a lack of sincerity- but the Bravery has proven that there are directions you can go with the dance-rock sound that aren’t into over-the-top dramatics (The Killers) or morbid ruminations (She Wants Revenge). So we go to the next divider: many fads die off cause there’s just nowhere else to go in the genre.

That’s where dance-rock is still to prove itself. And that’s where This Evening comes in. This Evening doesn’t really contribute anything new to the dance-rock genre, but the members are extremely talented, and the songs that This Evening crafts are really, really fun to listen to. Is this the beginning of the end for dance-rock, with no new avenues to explore? Or should I just shut up and tell you what This Evening sounds like?

I’ll take the latter. This Evening is a mostly-organic dance band that occasionally uses electronics for effect. The vocals are smooth, palatable, and easy to listen to- a nearly perfect pop voice, as there are no traces of whininess that pervade so much of pop music today. The bassist is awesome, churning out fast, melodic riffs that propel each song. The bass line in “Sad Song for Amy” is mind-blowing…it sounds like there should be two bassists playing. The guitar provides melody and jangly interjections (“Fake Juice”), but mostly the bass carries the sound here. The guitars and bass do interact extremely well, though- especially on the ridiculously tight-grooving “Sad Song for Amy”. The drummer is standard dance-rock fare, heavy on the cymbals and the ba-chk-ba-chk-ba-chk-ba-chk drumbeat. Yeah, you know the one.

With only four songs it’s almost moot to pick out favorite songs, but I would be a bad reviewer if I didn’t again reference the Chili-Peppers-esque “Sad Song…”. This track gives me a lot of hope for the future of This Evening, as it sounds like what the Chili Peppers would sound like on a dance floor- mellow, tripped-out, bass-heavy verses backed up by a thumping, synth-squawking, club-ready chorus. Add in the laid-back vocals and you’ve got an instant melody for hit.

This Evening does a great job of writing smooth, fun dance-rock songs. The band is extremely polished, and I can bet that watching them perform live would be a blast. They fall squarely in their genre, without pushing any barriers (except “Sad Song…”) but hey, not everything has to be the greatest ever. Just enjoy This Evening. That’s what they’re there for.

-Stephen Carradini

independentclauses@hotmail.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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