Saturday, March 3, 2012

All The Right Moves - The Monster I’ve Become EP


Minnesota-based All The Right Moves is making all the right moves.  Their release, The Monster I’ve Become, follows regional Mid-West success as a warm-up band.

The six track EP is a calculated pop-punk, focused on piano, violin and acoustic guitar, laced with catchy hooks and harmonies.  The band is comprised of writers, singers and guitarists Brandon Daly and Braden Ashworth, two Minnesota State University students who first played professionally as the indie band The Evermore Escape; violinist Roman Wolfe and drummer Dustin Phillips.  The songwriting is part story-telling and part aural landscape.

The first track Point of View is Billy Joel catchy with a punky back beat that asks you to “sing along.”  Track two, You Always Bring Me Down, builds from beautiful acapella harmonies to a walking two step shuffle that dramatically ascends to music of operatic Queen-like proportions counter-balanced by honky tonk piano and a hook of a chorus with a Mastodon-like guttural scream at the end.  The title track, The Monster I’ve Become, builds to a driving frenzy. The harmonies punctuate cute, cheeky lyrics that lead to a pop hook “that’s got this hold on me.”  The track HURRICANE is aptly described in all capital letters.  It is a piano-based unrequited love ballad that slowly bursts forth to make the point that the singer is “not okay.”  The track “Hollywood” is a driving rock number with harmonies that say “Hollywood and Vine thy’re calling you tonight.”  You can hear in the song the entire aspirations of the band.

The EP ends with Learn to Love Again, a classic rock lost love anthem. It shows the extent to which the band is trying to be accessible to a larger audience and desires to go mainstream with its sound.  Only time will tell whether they experience the success they seek but I wouldn’t bet against All The Right Moves.

- Old School

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