Shortie – Worthless Smiles (CD)

While Shortie’s information constantly throws the fact at potential reviewers that Shortie has played with umpteen popular rock bands, the same people who claim that are also claiming that Shortie is striving for their own sound. Shortie does not really have their own sound, per se but do mesh together some of the more quality aspects of a number of bands that have invaded mainstream rock radio in the last few years. Each track is cleanly and crispy recorded, and poduced to the point where any random track on the CD wouldn’t surprise me if I heard it on the local rock station. In fact, were I to put on this disc, chances are that nine out of ten modern rock listeners would mistake this disc for a radio broadcast, save for the annoying Djs and commercials. Each song comes through with just enough emotion to do themselves closer to their audience, but not enough heart to make this seem more than an exercise in tepid song-writing.

Sounding at times like Stabbing Westward, Pressure 4-5, Disturbed, Adema, and Unloco, Shortie chugs through their CD without making that one catchy track that will truly endear themselves to the video music outlets or major modern rock stations. While the promo sheet for Shortie details the “high-energy aggression” style of singing by the vocalist (Pogus), “the frenetic pounding bass by Kyle Klima”, and the “relentless rhythmic pounding of drummer Justin Halladay”, it does not describe or promise anything of musical prowess. Each guitar line has enough distortion to mask any slip-ups, the drums are utterly lifeless, and as previously mentioned, Pogus’ vocals lack any desire, any passion.

Worthless Smiles has one excellent adjective for the necessity of this disc in an already-overcrowded nu-metal scene. Chances are that if you have heard mainstream rock radio in the last few months, you have heard a score of bands that do the exact same thing as Shortie, and most actually do it better. If you see this disc at the store, make sure you put something better in front of it, as the nu-metal antics of this band does not even merit shelf space at any reputable store.

Top Tracks : Pick any, its all the same.

Rating : 2.3/10

Shortie – Worthless Smiles / 10 Songs / 2003 GoBig! Records / / / Reviewed 29 July 2003 / Released 2002

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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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