June 14, 2011

Arctic Death Album

Ok so I sort of went off the deep end about a week ago, and went on a tirade about Buffalo, suburbanites, the Elmwood Village, Thursday at the Square and...Arctic Death. I tend to get into funks about living in Buffalo and then write posts that are waaaaay too long ranting about it (sorry). However, Arctic Death happened to find this rant and preceded to message me their LP...awkward yes. However I thought it was very cool of them to sort of take the post with some sense of humor. Anyways my blog is quite small and I don't take it too seriously (I mean I get 30 to 80 readers a day if you must know...that's tiny). I enjoy posting things and listening to music, but mostly I have it out of my own personal need to have hobbies, ha. So since Arctic Death sent me their LP, I listened to every track, twice and have reviewed it below. Just a fair warning though, I didn't particularly like the record (sorry). However, I always post the music below my posts, for whomever wants to listen to it. I feel strongly about sharing music on my blog with everyone whether I like the band or not.

And I would just like to say that even though I am still not particularly fond of your music, I'm sure Buffalo Rising and ArtVoice will give you good reviews...if they haven't already. So here is a track by track review.

1. Bathe My Heart
Well, it started out slightly promising, the guitars and drums are ok, until the lead singer starts singing. I would like to bathe my heart in disappointment too. Maybe its just the way certain things are pronounced or the weird accent changes, but I just could not get into this track.

2. April
There is a bit more emotion in the lead singer's voice on this one, I can tell that they were trying really hard. And I think the song writing picked up here, But I felt as if the track was incomplete, the ending was too abrupt, and overall I feel as if the lead singer's voice takes away from the band rather than adding anything to it. I understand that whomever is singing has a very unique voice and sometimes that works in an indie rock group. Bjork doesn't have a "traditional" singing voice either, nor does Bob Dylan or Tom Waits. I feel as if these guys listen to a lot of Tom Waits...I could be wrong. But what works for Tom Waits isn't working for them.

3. Sisters
This one actually had a catchy chorus, and I like the incorporation of the female voices and the "call and response" singing in the middle. Out of all the tracks on the album this one was the one I liked the most.

4. Basement Stars
I think this was the point where I finally accepted the singer's voice (that doesn't mean I like it), I was just available to get passed it. I liked the other bands members yelling/singing in the background. But again I thought the song ended too abruptly, and overall it's still not something that I can imagine listening to in my free time (but that's just my personal opinion). I do feel as if this song had potential, but honestly this would be so much better with someone else singing it.

5. Pill Sized
Nice guitar riffs, I did like the instrumentals on this one.

6. Over
Meh. This one I was sort of neutral on, not bad, not good either. The guitar was good, I like the bass and the drums are decent, in fact the instrumentals on most of the tracks are fine. It's just that voice...

7. Trivial Honesty
Not good. That's all I can really say.

8. Toothache
I didn't get a toothache, more like a headache. But I did listen to this track three times...I tried.

9. Golden
I actually loved the beginning instrumentals of this one, but then the lyrics come in...Putting that aside, I thought the biblical references in this track were pretty cool. In fact I actually really liked the lyrics, but again, not only is the song almost completely ruined by the strange accent changes of the lead singer but they are almost hard to discern at points. However I know that's sort of the concept, it's a stylistic choice and I know the same could be said for the singing...but it just ain't working.

10. The Morning
For some reason this track reminds me of mornings when I wake up with a hangover, mostly because I usually have ringing in my ears, and nothing sounds good. However I did like the drums and the bass guitar in the middle.

11. River
Uh...its sort of hard writing reviews of all these tracks when in some cases there is nothing really distinguishable from one track to the next. This one was one of those mediocre tracks...I just don't have a ton to say. But nice guitar solo.

12. One Throat To Choke
Finally. One that had a slightly more experimental feel. Even the lead singer's voice sounded better on this one, the slight echo, the distorted instrumentals, all improved things exponentially. It's funny that this was also the shortest track.

While I may not have given the best review, I DID listen to every song multiple times. I thought it was only fair, since you sent me and LP that I listen to it from start to finish. And that's what I did. Obviously my opinion is pretty trivial, and I don't usually post too much local music. Most people who read this blog are not from Buffalo, and many are not even from the US, which means most of my more popular posts having nothing to do with Buffalo at all! Ha. Anyways good luck with the record, I'm sure you already have a pretty loyal local fan base.

If you are interested in buying the record it is already available pre-sale on their website.


Their Music:

Arctic Death - new song by buffablog

The Art by Arctic Death

'88 by Arctic Death


  1. I wish there was a way to critique blogs in the same way you critique bands. At least with this one you tried somewhat hard to focus on the music they produce instead of...everything else about them. Congratulations on dressing like a hipster for oh so long and living in Toronto, the city that gave us Broken Social Scene, and just about nothing else worthwhile. I think I speak for most of Buffalo when I say that if you don't like it here, there are plenty of options for you to leave. Thousands of people do it every year, and it's pretty cheap. If you're going to stay, and especially if you're going to continue to write about music publicly, learn to do it without worrying about suburbs, mustaches and your own personal wardrobe. People are much more prone to accept criticism when it isn't preceded by senseless rants that have nothing to do with the actual subject. Thousands of people read Artvoice and Buffalo Rising. 30 people read yours. Figure it out.

  2. dear mr anonymous,
    i know youre joking with your post and what the recent blog post said and she didnt actually offend you. Now sir, first off i will say i am not a keen fan of this style of music. i find it stale. 2 minutes, 1/8th note strumming, and 4 chords just does not have the same social pull it did 35 years ago. I'm sorry. I've only listen to these songs and a couple others with headphones so i havent had the full effect of the recordings yet(i will) but besides the live first one, which i will not count because i dont think any of the band members were keeping count with each other anyways, i hope that they did not pay for their recordings. So far. I will leave it at that as like i said, i have only listened to them with headphones so maybe there's some stereo imaging or something im lacking. As for this recent rumblings of catching them before a big label signs them, please stop. the big labels are dead in the water. unless you are mark zuckerberg, bill gates, or someone else incredibly creative and innovative there will be no serious money in music for artists in the foreseeable future. have you ever seen some recording contracts artists think theyre signing? i have and unless their lawyer is an entertainment lawyer theyre screwed. theyll end up owing money in the long run. if you happened to know these guys, save them some money, tell them stay independent and pay a little bit extra, go to robbie's studio and record in allen or wherever it is, go straight to a distribution company, take out the middle man and do it yourself. promote like hell, play a show every night. youll see them alot around here dont worry.