The Sunset Curse

Written by on July 15, 2010 in July 15, 2010, Music Reviews - Comments Off on The Sunset Curse

The Sunset CurseThe Sunset Curse calls their music electronic-thrash-rock. I can agree with that description for the most part. The thrash element is apparent however it’s not one that stands out too much.  Their new album Artificial Heart is primarily electronic-rock and because of that this recording is quite solid.

Chris Nelson (vox, guitar, keys), Bradley Bakewell (bass, guitar, vox), and Cody York (drums, synth, programs) are three guys that obviously know what they are doing in the studio. This is not the kind of music that is for everyone and it’s everything but mainstream.

“Slow Lover’s Sky” is more like Brian Eno than rock and thrash. The instrumental track sets itself apart from the rest. It’s a ghostly ambient track that is actually very cool. Everything that comes before it takes a nod from the early 80’s electronic-rock-pop genre from the likes of Thomas Dolby to hints of Red Rider (Tom Cochrane’s band) and such, just with a harder edge. That is where the thrash and rock work together to give The Sunset Curse their own definitive sound that stands by itself in 2010. The title track is a knockout punch in every way and the one track that helped me to realize just how good this band is.

At first I did not take a liking to this CD but then I sat down again and listened to it in its entirety and got a different view of it. There are a lot of things going on here considering there are only three guys making the music. Chris Nelson’s voice will remind you of other vocalist you have heard but the music is very different and hard to pin down and put in any one box. This is the thing that hooked me about this album. I loved the guitar work, its jangling and echoing grooves sucked me right in as Nelson’s voice gradually becomes the perfect complement to the musical curtain that falls over your senses. “Life Is An Ocean, Death Is A Breeze” is a superb track that shows you everything the band has. The lingering atmosphere is a pool of swirling guitars, vox, keys, bass and drums. Then to really throw you off they close out the CD with “World Burning” which sounds like more of a folk-pop outfit stretching out rather than the manic intensity you just got through listening to.

This is the kind of eclectic musicianship that will keep listeners coming back for more, wondering what it is they could have missed the first time around. Chances are there will be plenty to hear a second and third time right around the corner. I enjoy this music the more I listen and realize if I had not given it a fair shot that I would have missed out. I am glad I kept an open mind and discovered a new band with a unique sound that I know I will always enjoy now.

4/5 Stars

Key Tracks: Life Is An Ocean, Death Is A Breeze, Slow Lover’s Sky, Artificial Heart

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck