Lilac Ambush Arsenal
By Marcus Pan
Ive been putting this review off for a while,
and I think its mostly because its hard to find something
spectacular to say about Lilac Ambushs Arsenal. Its solid,
quite well made for an indie release (off of Twisted Spinach Records), but it
hovers with the other dark and gloomy goth rockers. Its somewhat minimal,
guitars are muted but effective and backing electronics are mellow and laid
back. The whole album, really, is kind of a throwback to an earlier time when
things werent so heavy handed and blasting.
Songs like Virtual and Buzzsaw have somewhat
repetitive lyrics which makes it a bit hard to get into the track without
getting a little off-put by blasé. Its almost like Lilac Ambush
are doing a punk rock version of dark gloomy goth where tracks should be
only 2 ½ minutes in length because their messages are that quick. Most
stray along slowly, with occasional beat lifters like Take Aim. Most
tracks will repeat the choruses a number of times without this wed
have the 2 ½ minute crunches that would go down easier.
Buzzsaw has an interesting off-base beat, but moves
slowly and ploddingly. Senastion is one of the more complicated on
Arsenal and shows what I hope is a vision of Lilac Ambushs future.
Tension brings in a lovely female vocalist that works harmoniously off
of the male vocalists. I really like the soft tones of Beside the
Darkness. The percussion gets a little stronger as well, and the flute
playing against the strumming guitar is a nice sound. The closing track, the
Blue Sky Mix of Tension speeds it up slightly and adds some nice
textures to it.
Lilac Ambushs Arsenal is one of those CDs that
tried hard but finds it difficult to grow beyond what it really could be. Songs
are solid, if a little under-produced, but brood too long sometimes and loses
your interest as you go. Maybe too strict of a moody goth rock formula is being
used instead of mixing it up or speeding it up just a little. They can
certainly program and certainly write interesting songs and lyrics, but
occasionally it will lose itself in its downright plodding moodiness.
Post: PO Box 7, Gloucester, MA 01931, USA
Phone: (978) 397-2562
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