The debut album from Appogee, like other recent releases from Kanpai records, is an uneven mix of brilliance and banality, but thankfully there are enough different styles here to keep most everyone pacified, if not ecstatic. Fans of darker stuff will enjoy the fuzzy guitar samples of “Creeper” or the stony guitars and drum ‘n’ bass rhythms of “KDDR Mov. 3,” while the electronic college rock of “I’m Yours” is wistful in the vein of bands like the Postal Service, blending reedy vocals with piano melody and a light touch on the drum machine. “Ep[i]Phany” is also interesting, full of whispering over a thick, down-tempo groove, and the strummed guitars of “NTheme” are poignant and relaxing. Unfortunately the rest of this album is a little too sweet for its own good. The mariachi guitars on “This Moment” are more cloying than exotic, and “Meaning of Life” is pretty but bland, with sampled voices spouting pseudo-philosophy like undergraduates at a mediocre liberal arts college. The production on this album is clear and subtle, the musicianship exquisite, and the arrangements complex yet understated. It’s just a shame that so much talent is being wasted on elevator music.
For more information on Appogee, visit their website at www.appogeemusic.com
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