Friday, April 22, 2011

This Modern Empire - Tom Roberts

Hear The Track Here

Between their appearance as The Empires a couple of years ago, and a couple of tracks under their new moniker This Modern Empire, I have come to the half dozen stage and some have been definitely worth it and others not so much. This Modern Empire are a three piece (that's trio to you) band from Australia specializing in alternative/indie of the shoegaze/mopy type and - I freely admit - I'm not always comfortable with this genre. I suspect there is only so much introspection I can take before I fling my hands into the air and pelt off into the distance at top speed (Ed: about 2mph is my best guess).

One of my main problems with them has been with the production because where that has come up to the mark, this band can be excellent. Vocally too, they have proved to be weak in spots and Tom Roberts carries on that tradition although it is - I suppose - meant to be lo-fi like this. One thing my ear has definitely become accustomed to over the years of reviewing unsigned musicians is when someone is holding back, especially vocally. This is the main flaw, in my opinion, with this track but it is still worth pursuing because there is a good song here.

It's also, as far as I can tell, a fairly personal tale so don't go looking for famous Tom Roberts's's's's's (Ed: like he did) because I suspect that this one is known personally to the writer of the song. As I said, this track is worth listening to for the song, although it was marred for me by the laying back of the vocal, I'm sure this vocal could be delivered in a more assured manner. One more small niggle (God is there no end to this?) concerns the drums which are probably live and therefore nothing much can be done about it but this has one of the lamest snare sounds I have heard in a while. Nonetheless, this IS worth checking out and I hope a remix could be in order.

Recommended melodic indie.

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