The Exit Strategy – City of Microphones

The Exit Strategy – City of Microphones / 2008 One Percent / 12 Tracks / /

The Exit Strategy have not been around for too terribly long; they formed in 2004. Considering that they were working on this album likely in 2006 and 2007, that does not give them all that much time to perfect their sound. However, individuals just need to listen to a track like “X-Rays” and any perception regarding the newness of the band rapidly disappears. Where I would like to go and categorize The Exit Strategy as an act that conforms to the sound of early Rise Against, that is simply not the case. What the band does during the opening of “City of Microphones” is completely unique.

The band as the swirling guitars of acts like At The Drive In and earlier Dischord bands linked together with vocals that have hints of Alkaline Trio present. The other elements of the band really do a good job in uniting these disparate elements, and this generates what is The Exit Strategy’s distinct sound. “Addition by Subtraction” is the second track on “City of Microphones”, and it continues many of the same trends that opened up “X-Rays”. If it was not for the intricate arrangements that are commonplace during an Exit Strategy track, I would say that the band could conceivably make a rut for themselves. Luckily for them (and for the listeners that have this disc in their players), The Exit Strategy have a tremendously skilled set of individuals behind every interest. This means that the band can change things up and still play virtually the same style of rock music and yet be able to make twelve or even fifteen different tracks.

For example, The Exit Strategy during their “Motorcade” are able to push down the vocal levels considerably and allow the arrangements of the band to shine through. This gives individuals another perception of the band, as well as diversifies the possible directions that The Exit Strategy can take in the tracks to come. While I must admit that I am not familiar with One Percent Press (their record label), I have a feeling that subsequent albums will be on No Idea, Deep Elm, or Sabot. The band is that solid. I could conceivably see the band taking on a path like The Appleseed Cast or Against Me!, but if Against Me! hadn’t completely sold out their morals to make a few million extra dollars. Give them your money right now!

Top Tracks: Judas Kiss, Motorcade

Rating: 8.0/10

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Author: James McQuiston

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

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