Monday, August 5, 2013
Up From the Underground:Monks of Mellonwah "Ghost Stories"
Sydney Pop/Rock act Monks of Mellonwash like many artists these days are experimenting with different ways to release music in the face of the industry wide confusion how to work around illegal downloading and keep the album a relevant format in the age of iPod shuffle, so they are releasing their newest effort in volumes.
This first volume starts of with the sugary catchy title track. The vocal melodies are very refined, and even though this sort of thing isn't what I normally listen the hooks are addictive and to quote Scarface, "Every time I try to get out. they pull me back in." The more rock element of the song lies in the very Muse riff in the b-section, though their bass player isn't shredder like Muse's and doesn't keep up with the riff to give it the same punch, but overall it comes as a dynamic surprise after the first half of the song which is much poppier.
The Muse worship doesn't stop their, the riff to "Vanity" is coated in Matt Bellamy bravado, even in the bridge. The very Incubus vocal styling's do help to hide this fact, though the falsetto backing vocals work like loss prevention against them. This song isn't crafted as air tight as the title track, but has more though behind it than you would expect from this sort of thing. The line "Vanity, vanity, you're stretching my insanity, reminds me of Michael Jackson, in the way it's phrased.
They come closer into their own on "Sailing Stones" . They have a more grunge tinge to the guitar riff and the soulful vocals, invoke Corey Glover of Living Colour. I suppose the string interlude is supposed to be a Muse thing but it reminds me more of "Kashmir" since Muse stole that sort of thing from Zeppelin in the first place. So these Sydney boys aren't the most original but if they can replicate the type of fine tuning on the vocal lines of the first song they can dominate crossover radio.