14 September, 2014 in Music Reviews
Former winners of our Songwriting/ReverbNation competition come good with a genre-defying track that’s like Kate Bush given a punk/metal makeover
egular Songwriting readers should be aware of Sylvana Joyce & The Moment already – the New York-based outfit were winners of our competition with ReverbNation back in September 2013. Never ones to be easily pigeonholed, we described them then as a ‘gypsy-folk-blues quintet’, but this new single-track release, which is available via Bandcamp, sees them embracing a rockier side altogether.
Or at least it does in parts, because SJ and co are never happy to stay in one stylistic place for too long… even within the same song! So for the first minute of its life, Rosie could be an early 80s Kate Bush out-take, what with its nagging one-note piano riff and Sylvana’s near-falsetto vocal. The gypsy strings we associate with The Moment then join the party as Sylvana wonders aloud, “Do you want to goo-goo-ca-choo/in the Blue Danube?”. So far so normal… then at 2:42 Ms Joyce suddenly bursts into a punky wail reminiscent of Beth Ditto, backed by some heavy riffin’ that by the four-minute mark has broken out into full-on shredding as Sylvana belts out the “Ashes, ashes, we all fall in love/Ashes, ashes, we all fall down” chorus.
“A distinctive sound all of their own,” is what we said about this lot a year ago. On this evidence, perhaps that should be “at least half-a-dozen distinctive sounds all of their own”. If you were looking for a new favourite band that really don’t sound like anyone else, you might well just have found them.
Verdict: An insane, arty yet still accessible concoction that must be heard to be believed