CD REVIEW: Bone of Contention - Self Titled
By: Cyrus Rhodes
- INDIE MUSIC DIGEST-
Artist: Bone of Contention
Label: Independent Artist
Genre: Jam Band, Progressive Rock, Classic Rock
Sounds Like: Yes, Rush, Supertramp, ELP, King Crmison
Technical Grade: 9/10
Production/Musicianship Grade: 9/10
Weakness: Winded Songs, More Solos and Vocal Harmonies, More vocal risks
Los Angeles 3 piece band Bone of Collection just released their debut self- titled CD in 2011. Band members include: Chet Cline (Keyboards, Vocals) Dave Haddad (Drums and Percussion) and Bill Pittman and Louie Ruiz (Bass).
The CC kicks things off with End of an Error” an intoxicating intro piece that sets the stage rather appropriately for this catalogue of music. After a methodical intro this first piece explodes in your ears with pulsating rock rhythm, against persistent keyboards, thought provoking lyrical content against dynamic musical flow. Track 2 “Fickle Finger of Fate” serves up a steady bass driven vibe against Alternative Rock melody and musical layering that can be described as captivating, mesmerizing and infectious. Track 3 “Eyes on the Prize” slowly unfolds with its methodical intro eventually exploding into sizzling chops, pulsating bass grooves, impressive keyboard and synthesizer accents with exotic layers of sound that come at you from all directions. As the CD slowly unfolds I can hear many different musical textures reminiscent of classic 70’s Psychedelic Rock with Hints of Jam band and Classic rock. I suspect musical influences are: Yes, Rush, Supertramp and even traces of ELP and King Crmison. The music is extremely melodic and stimulating but definitely brings to the table a lot of musical variety, originality and a high degree of unpredictability. Bone of Contention brings to the table a conservative range of instrumentation. You will notice rich musical textures overflowing everywhere - from mesmerizing keyboard accents and impressive piano solos, amazing drum performance, well placed bass and mesmerizing vocals. There's not a dull moment on the entire EP. The melodic layering is deep; the sonic ambience is infectious, From heartfelt ”Albatross” to hypnotic “of Mites and Men” to my personal favorite ”Bad Karma” to dynamic “Guano” and Feed the Greed” to melodic “Big Bamboozle” this CD has something for just about everyone. The CD ends with track 10 Beacon of the Earth” the perfect finale statement for a CD like this.
True to Progressive Rock form - all songs over 4 minutes tend to drag you to the finish line. I didn’t hear any vocal harmonies throughout the CD. This would have mixed up the vocal performances up a bit adding more variety and depth to the vocal instrument. I also wish I heard more in the way or guitar solos along the way. I don’t care for how the vocal sit back within the mix. Finally – I Like Cline’s vocals throughout however I wish he took more vocal risks throughout the CD showcasing blood curling emotions.
From start to finish Bone of Contention is a rock solid CD release. It’s extremely consistent, original, and very melodic. It’s strength – it’s amazing songwriting, originality, and unpredictability. Make no bones about it these are 3 cutting edge talented composers and players. When the CD is over you will be dazzled by their originality, overwhelmed by their diversity and mystified by their songwriting.