Bronze – Calypso Shakedown

Bronze – Calypso Shakedown / 2006 Self / http://www.myspace.com/bronzechicago /

“On The Clock” literally sounds as if Bronze is coming out of the late seventies or early eighties. Whether it is through the heavy use of synthesizers, or through the emotive vocals, the band loves their musical predecessors. Like current retro-looking acts like The Darkness or the Scissor Sisters, Bronze are able to be deeply involved in earlier musical styles and yet keep individuals interested in the current. “On The Clock” is easily equivalent to a Chicago or a Seals and Crofts track, from the bouncy instrumentation down to the multiple sets of vocals.

This track, despite its smooth sound, is chock-full of different layers, masking the track’s intricacy. “Jezebel” goes back a few more years, having a Motown type of funk that operates as the track’s main influence. The slow tempo of the track is present to further highlight the faster segments of the track. This chiaroscuro (fast and slow instead of dark and light) further diversifies the band’s sound during “Calypso Shakedown”. Where “On The Clock” largely succeeded during the catchy harmonies present during the track, “Jezebel” has a complex sound that will make listeners focus on the track a number of times before truly “getting” what the band was trying to do on the track. “Artist…” is a track that brings the band into some sort of mish-mash between middle-era Beatles and the aforementioned Chicago. This track is the most interesting one on the disc due to the fact that it largely is instrumental.

There are vocals on the track, but they operate in a very instrumental type of way, rather than conveying vocal information to listeners. Bronze is able to capture the sound and spirit of the seventies and link it to the current zeitgeist in such a way that the band has a tremendous chance to be the next “Retro” act to break it big. Hell, the band is even able to make a convert out of me; I absolutely despise Manfred Mann and all of his ilk, and I fell head-long into the musical style of Bronze during their “Calypso Shakedown”. I am not sure how well the band would transfer to the live setting, but I feel that they could do well given the smart arrangements and catchy songs present on this album. Buy this disc and put it alongside your White Stripes, Darkness, and Rapture CDs. It will fit in nicely.

Top Tracks: On The Clock, Jezebel

Rating: 7.5/10

Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / neufutur.com since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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