Sunday, June 17, 2007

Review - FLATLINED - Deaf Leading the Blind

DEAF LEADING the BLIND
Flatlined
Voodoo Records
6-out-of-10
Flatlined, a band out of St. Catherines, ON., is something of a new voice coming out of the indie music scene. Deaf Leading the Blind is the band's second recording, following what was essentially a self-produced promo CD effort.
So is Deal Leading the Blind an indie classic in the making? No, it is not. Will the CD blast Flatlined to the top of the charts, and a major record deal? I wouldn't expect so.
That being said there are indications here that Flatlined could become a very solid band. The question is which way the band will eventually follow as they develop their sound.
As it stands the band seems a little bit out of focus. I found some of their lyrics rather dark and tasty, such as those on Way Too Long, but the music didn't seem to match the words, at least to my ear. The music here all has what I term a 'radio-friendly' lilt. Bands often focus on such music, making sure not to leave too many hard edges on the music for fear radio will keep them off their play lists as a result.
Lyrically though, Flatlined seems to be writing material best suited to a music with more of a rawness. In time that may come as they become more comfortable with themselves as a band.
You can hear little riffs here which are reminiscent of other bands too, for example you can almost hear the Bare Naked Ladies on parts of Dead or Alive, although again the lyrics are darker than the Ladies usually go.
By contrast The Last Goodbye is just too popish for my tastes. A tad contrived for radio.
There are some solid cuts here, including Too Far Away and the title cut, which is the first single release from the CD. I also liked the darkness of the words with Open Wide.
These guys need some maturity, but they show hints of better things ahead. That is also a good sign on a first release, you want to hear potential for growth.
Flatlined will play Rayzr's in the Yorkton Hotel Monday, and anyone interested in listening to a band starting out, one with potential, and enough solid songs to make their future look solid, should make sure to get out to the show. Of course as a side note, hopefully music buffs will get out and support as much live music as possible, so that Yorkton becomes a place bands regularly pencil in to play as they roll down Highway 16 from Winnipeg to Edmonton.
- CALVIN DANIELS
- Review first appeared Yorkton This Week newspaper April 4, 2007 - Yorkton, SK. Canada

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