EP REVIEW: Feldiken - “Common Splendor."
By: Cyrus Rhodes
"will lift your spirits"
- INDIE MUSIC DIGEST:-
Label: Independent Artist
Genre: Alternative, Acoustic Rock
Sounds Like: Jack Johnson, They Might Be Giants
Technical Grade: 7/10
Genera Identity Crisis
Brooklyn, New York’s own Feldiken releases his latest EP entitled “Common Splendor.” in 2010. He is accompanied by Pete Archer on bass & Lou Lacobelli on drums. This is his second release.
The EP takes flight with “Age of Miracles” an upbeat acoustic-rock intro piece that serves up steady rock groove against catchy vocal melodies, & hooky chorus from Feldiken. Track 2 is hands down my personal favorite “Together in the Groove” shifts gears with it’s smooth flowing techno groove beat & infectious vocal melody line from Feldiken Track 2 evolves into a solid rock groove with clever lyrical content, & impressive vocal accents to boot - an amazing piece. Track 3 “Common Splendor” serves up yet another up beat folk-rock ditty with driving rock rhythm, against impressive strings & horn accent along the ways. As the CD slowly unfolds I can hear many musical influences reminiscent of classic They Might Be Giants, Gin Blossoms, Death Cab for Cutie, The Beetles, & perhaps a splash of Jack Johnson. This CD makes a pretty solid first impression. Right from the start you will notice rich musical textures overflowing everywhere, full of warmth, variety, & strong melodic structure. I would classify this music as acoustic pop rock, with a slight aftertaste of alternative folk. The songs themselves are addictive, & upbeat, complete with positive, carefree subject matter. The musicianship of this band is pretty solid across the board. The players themselves write, & play there parts extremely well song for song. Along the way you will notice lush layers of instrumentation. Besides the 4 piece standard you will also catch impressive things well placed keyboard & Hammond Organ Chops, impressive techno groove accents, low end bass grooves & beats, & even well placed horn & string accents. Feldken’s voice works well across the board & fills the sonic space peacefully & unobtrusively. It will at times remind you of a cross between Sugar Ray & Gordon Gano (Violent Femmes). I might add Feldiken’s falsetto is quite impressive & well placed. All songs are short & sweet musical experiences. From heartfelt “Everybody Loves You” to grooving “Everything for Everyone” & “The Future” this CD pretty much has it all.
The overall mix of this EP is a bit inconsistent. A few songs don’t even sound like the same band or EP so it’s fair to say the catalogue is a bit all over the place, perhaps suffering from a slight case of genera identity crisis. However I will add that because the songs themselves are so well crafted, this issue is virtually goes relatively un-noticeable to the common listener. Track 3 is a bit short & just feels like an incomplete statement.
“Common Splendor” is an impressive musical production from start to finish. The music is clean, goes down smooth, & the messages are upbeat, carefree, & sung from a very positive perspective. It’s strong suit – the wide musical variety & musical warmth of Feldken & company. He possesses enough musical talent & songwriting prowess to be extremely dangerous. The musicianship is first rate. Once again the vocals, vocal harmonies, & melodic accents are brilliantly placed & extremely well crafted. The messages are packed to the hilt with rich conventional wisdom offering hope & compassion along the way. As a listener I remained entertained the entire time. “Common Splendor” goes down smooth, & will not only make you want to dance, but will lift your spirits in the process.
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