A synthesizer is omnipresent during â€œYes, This is About Youâ€, and the nineties-influenced alternative rock of Gatsbyâ€™s American Dream is just merely a facet of the entire force of the band. The opening track mixes the Weezer-like rock that forms Gatsbyâ€™s American Dreamâ€™s base with pure cheese metal, and the second track, â€œA Conversation With The Devilâ€ is influenced by doo-wop and fifties and sixties American rock. Nothing can possibly hold the band back on this disc besides the band themselves, as the mastering of â€œLandâ€ is solid, with the only possible complaint being levied against it being that the EP is not necessarily warm enough. Splashing heavily during â€œI Smell An Agendaâ€, the drums come into prominence, gradually replacing the vocals as an aural force. Comparable to Maroon 5 during â€œYou Stole My Storyâ€, the track seems as if it is trying too hard â€“ the hard burst of percussion and bass does not proceed logically from the rest of the track. While I understand that this shock may be necessary, it jars the listenersâ€™ ears and disrupts the momentum carefully cultivated on the rest of the disc.
The synthesizer comes back for a solo during â€œThe Badlandsâ€, pairing itself well when the vocals come back to audible levels. Providing a harder presence during the ultimate track, â€œThe Dragon of Pendorâ€, the brooding drums put out the saccharine-sweet vocals found on the track, vocals that only sound proper when the drums disappear. The synthesizer provides an ambient soundscape that flitters over top of the bass on â€œThe Dragon of Pendorâ€, and the bass solo provides a percussive quality that works along with the vocals in a much more compelling way than the oddly-off drums.
â€œIn the Land of Lost Monstersâ€ shows a band that is still attempting to find its way, jumping from style to style while leaving some fairly large leaps for the listeners to limber. The disc is less radio-friendly than â€œRibbons & Sugarâ€, and the extended drum solo that ends â€œThe Dragon of Pendorâ€â€ is symbolic of the frustration that the listener has in that they know that Gatsbyâ€™s American Dream is good, but on both this and their previous LP, they havenâ€™t been at the top of their game. Perhaps pieces will fall together for their debut release on Fearless, although the latter has sunk many a promising band.
Top Track: Yes, This Is About You
Gatsbyâ€™s American Dream â€“ In The Land of Lost Monsters / 2004 LLR Recordings / 7 Tracks / http://www.gatsbysamericandream.com / http://www.llrrecords.com / Reviewed 07 October 2004