The brand of indie rock that Johnny Action Figure plays is a call back to the late nineties, where indie rock and emo did not deviate much in their general sound. There is interesting uses of time signatures during the disc’s opening track “Lose Our Face”. During “Lose Our Face”, the momentum is created both by the jangly arrangements as well as through multiple vocal layers. This gives the band a much fuller sound at the onset of this album than pretty much any other band that is in their shoes.
The track is an unlikely candidate for it, but there is a radio friendly aspect to the song in much the same way as early Sunny Day Real Estate. This same general sound is continued during the slower “(This Is How I Look) When I Laugh At Death”. The band may be forwarding a very nineties brand of rock with the songs on this EP, but Johnny Action Figure is talented enough to go forth and have enough of a current sound during each track to keep individuals listening in. Thus, what is a very sedate sound created by the band during “(This Is How I Look)” is in reality something much more intense and hard-hitting. The ability of the band to obfuscate this energy is another reason why this EP should be searched out and picked up. By the time that the second track is done, individuals will feel as if they are intimately familiar with Johnny Action Figure.
The most innovative that “Asks The Room” gets is during “Please Stop Spinning”. This track has a much more earl Alkaline Trio meets New Found Glory sound, even as the band continues to channel the spirit of acts like The Appleseed Cast. What results is yet another rack individuals would not necessarily know if they heard it on the college radio station, but would be calling in immediately after the song finishes to figure out who was behind it. Each subsequent track on “Asks The Room” gives listeners something else to like about the band. The disc may be less than twenty-five minutes, but the sheer range of genres, sounds, and styles that Johnny Action Figure traverses here is without comparison. I have little doubt in my mind that the band could add five or six tracks to this EP and have a solid full-length album. Look Johnny Action Figure up if you like any of the genres previously mentioned and be prepared to sing along by the third or forth listen to the CD.
Top Track: Replaced With Lampposts
Johnny Action Figure – Asks The Room To Please Stop Spinning / 2006 DRP / 7 Tracks / http://www.johnnyactionfigure.com / http://www.drprecords.com / Reviewed 06 December 2006