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CD REVIEW: Fosskit No 5 - Clemency

By: Cyrus Rhodes

 

"Band to watch in 2011"

 

"Amazing"

- INDIE MUSIC DIGEST -

 

 

 

 

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Artist: Fosskit No 5
Album: Clemency
Label: Independent Artist
Website:
http://www.fosskitno5.com
Genre: Acoustic Pop, Indie Rock, Alternative Rock
Sounds Like: Train, Live, Rob Thomas, Matchbox 20
Technical Grade: 10/10
Production/Musicianship Grade: 10/10
Commercial Value: 10/10
Overall Talent Level: 10/10
Songwriting Skills: 10/10
Performance Skill: 10/10
Best Songs: World Without You, Autumn Moon, 4:21
Weakness: NONE

 

CD REVIEW:

 

Austin TX based Fosskit releases their debut CD entitled Clemency in May, 2010. The band is composed of Neal Mehta (vocals, guitar) & Joon Yee Chuah (Keyboards, Violin). This particular CD was produced by John Bush who has produced the likes of  Edie Brickell & the New Bohemians & The Spin Doctors just to name a few.   

 


The CD methodically takes to flight with “For Ella” a song that serves up driving rock rhythm against well placed grooves and hooky vocal melodies that peaks and valleys its way to fruition. Track 2 “Cabs Won’t Stop” shifts gears a bit with a steady flowing rock rhythm, well placed keyboard accents combined with a catchy chorus & heartfelt vocal delivery from Mehtha. Track 3 shifts gears back down another notch with “World Without You” a passionate rock with its catchy power pop vibe, infectious melody and a grand slam of a chorus. As this CD slowly unfolds I can hear many different musical soundscapes reminiscent of such classic acts such as Live, Train, John Mayer, and even Rob Thomas & Matchbox 20. The music itself is an impressive modern blend of acoustic rock, with folksy-type elements, yet with alternative rock aftertaste. The musicianship of both Mehta & Chuah are clearly above the bar. Both talents complement each other quite well. Along the way you will notice lush instrumentation with things like impressive solo guitar, piano, percussive accents, strings, Acoustic Guitar, lush harmonies, well placed keyboard accents & melodies. Turning our attention squarely on Mehta now, he has an impressive voice reminiscent of Ed Kowalczyk (Live) & Greg Schindel. Mehta makes the (Singer to listener) connection as he takes several impressive vocal risks throughout the CD indicating to me a song and confident vocal ability. His emotional timber and mojo is off the charts as he is obviously singing from the heart on many of these pieces. He has the look, he plays guitar and he has a good voice. If he just so happened to write all these songs – well, he may be bigger than any of us realize. Indeed these 2 individuals possesses star quality and should be considered premier talents. I can honestly say I was entertained the entire time, with never a dull moment to be found. From melodic “Autumn Moon” to mesmerizing ”4:21”to heartfelt “Guess You’ll Never Know” & upbeat “Uncertainty Principle” this CD has something for just about everyone. The CD ends with “When He’s Gone” the perfect song to wave you in for a smooth landing.

I usually dedicate this paragraph to weaknesses. As you can see I have nothing to report.

From start to finish “Clemency” is an amazing collection of music. In fact it’s one of  the best CD’s to come across my desk this year. Kudos goes out to the brilliant production expertise of John Bush who also added some very impressive drums & Percussion along the way. The music is highly passionate, uplifting, and extremely entertaining. The songwriting of this duo is world class, consistently taking you on musical experiences, each one possessing a unique personality, flair, and signature groove. There isn’t really a weak piece in this entire catalogue. The writing and playing abilities of Fosskit are rock solid, the melodies and harmonies are well crafted, and the lyrical content is packed to the hilt with conventional wisdom. Fosskit is a band to watch in 2011. Last but not least the vocal presence of Neal Mehtha is world-class. I look forward to hearing more material from these 2 very soon.
 

Cyrus Rhodes