Saturday, February 26, 2005

Camilla - Of Bees and Flies CD Review

Turn on the radio to your favorite rock station and you’re sure to be inundated by a slew of sophomoric modern rock bands who have just enough talent to make a catchy song or two, but not an ounce more. So what’s a person to do to find good, new modern rock? Well, you could read webzines and online reviews that seem to hand out praise to all these bands that you’ve never heard of who are supposed to be the best musicians ever. More often than not, though, the bands that get this high praise from online reviewers are more pretentious and artsy than they are listenable. It seems like indie rock is the only type of rock to get recognition by many of the more popular webzines out there. It just seems so hard to find any bands to bridge the gap in between the two disparate climates of the radio world and the online world.

From what I initially heard of Camilla, I though maybe they could fill in that space, but upon repeated listens, they definitely fall more into the indie genre, which is unfortunate. There are altogether way too many bands doing this style of music, which leads this cd to feel like yet another permutation on what’s been done many times before. Don’t get me wrong, though, there are some good tunes to be found on here. “On Trains” is a haunting, unbelievably good, keyboard assisted indie rock tune. It flows wonderfully from crooning vocal harmonies over a quickly plucked guitar to sample enhanced, keyboard layered indie rock, and back again just as effortlessly. “Fear Level Orange” has a very bouncy, yet melancholy, feel to it once it hits its stride 3 minutes in. This song also possesses a nice little keyboard support section towards the end. “I-95” has a mellow, nonchalant vibe to it that feels a little like some of Brand New’s more toned down efforts.

The rest of the cd, however, feels really dreary, slow, and somewhat bland. A lot of the other songs venture into the really mellow and boring territory of indie that tends to put listeners to sleep when allowed to play for too long. When they actually create songs that manage to keep your eyes open, they do it well, so if they can focus on that in future releases they’ll easily win over a ton of indie fans. Until then this cd is pretty much a hit and miss affair. It might be worth a listen to those of you who crave keyboard flavored indie rock, but anyone who is well versed in the genre will be disappointed.

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