The style of music that The Pale Pacific play is a very dreamy sort of emo-influenced rock that allows for a greater explication of their tracks, manifest in the sense that the first track “Sucker Punch” breaks the five-minute mark. The band is not content in maintaining their slower tempo, as “Sucker Punch” has eddies and crests, moving towards and away from a brilliant sort of high-octane sound, all while couched in the aforementioned style. The Pale Pacific finally do move towards their harder edge towards the end of the first track, but then go flip-mode and use a very poppy, early-nineties influenced sound for their second track, “Identity Theft”.
This track expands on the sound of “Sucker Punch” in the sense that the band experiments with the dynamic found between their band members as well as with the time signatures, instead opting for an innovative signature to really top off the track. The third track “In the Sun Pt. 1” really needs its second part to really have much of an impression on its listeners; the track just does not purvey much in the way of emotion considering that it ends before the track hits the two-minute mark. So, with the number of actual tracks numbering 3 instead of 4, the ability that one has in trying to gain a feel for who exactly The Pale Pacific are is diminished. Here’s to hoping that their new album will keep up the same level of respectability that “Rules Are Predictable” has; the production on the disc really helps the band shine, especially in the fact that is shows a nuanced band that is not happy until the perfect sound is cultivated.
The anemic “All My Friends” has a sly Matthew Sweet-type of sound to it, with the lead vocals really keeping the track from the dustbin of history. What listeners are left with during “Rules Are Predictable” is a Pale Pacific that moves effortlessly between “real” emo, indie rock, and pop-alternative from the early nineties to today. The band is talented enough to ensure that whatever guise they assume will be just as affecting to their audience, and while this EP does not have much in the way of experimentation, “Rules Are Predictable” could just be one of the stronger EPs to be cut this year.
Top Track: Sucker Punch
The Pale Pacific – Rules Are Predictable / 2005 SideCho / 4 Tracks / http://www.thepalepacific.com / http://www.sidecho.com / Reviewed 21 May 2005