Borrowing liberally from both hard alternative rock and modern dance influences, Toronto-based Soundgazer's particular brand of industrial is definitely on the more accessible end of the spectrum. Singer and multi-instrumentalist Voytek Iwasiuk, the project's creator, often aims for big, bombastic anthems, as on "Silent Scream," which layers hard-driving electric guitar over futuristic techno synths, but his vocal approach leaves something to be desired. Affected and overwrought, it mars the otherwise solid arrangements on moody ballad "Temporary State," though this album's title track, "Screen Feel," manages to sidestep the issue by utilizing more spoken vocals than singing. Also decent is "Find," an upbeat but more relaxed song not unlike Apoptygma Berzerk's more recent material. "Adds to You" takes a more experimental approach with progressive rock guitar solos and pulsing drum machines, like Pink Floyd by way of New Order, while the last third of the album, originally recorded in 2005, highlight Soundgazer's earlier, more trance-inspired sound. Of this material, "Shallow Air" is lovely progressive trance, "What Is" hints at more of a synthpop vibe, and "Place Only I Know" is intense and anthemic, though again, Iwasiuk's angst-filled vocal affectations can be somewhat distracting from the energized synthesizer harmonies. This is a decent album, but not a great one; Iwasiuk still hasn't quite discovered a vocal style to perfectly fit his music. The songwriting and the arrangements are there, though, so it should only be a matter of time before the elements start to coalesce.
Visit Voytek and friends at www.soundgazer.net.
|< Prev||Next >|