Friday, 20th July 2018. 3:00:02am ET
Reviews CD Reviews Alternative, Indie Rock Spiraling- Challenging Stage


Artist: Spiraling
CD Title: Challenging Stage
Label: self-released
Reviewer: Joshua Heinrich
Date: 12/7/04

Largely the brainchild of writer/producer/vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Tom Brislin, Spiraling's Challenging Stage is a solid, albeit brief, four song outing that showcases not only extremely competent songwriting but also highly inventive production. At the band's center, you'll find a fairly standard rock lineup. However, the band's sound is filled out by a more diverse array of instrumentation including organ, moog, clavinet, mellotron, and piano. It's an exceptionally interesting musical package that takes fairly standard elements and embellishes them with unexpectedly unusual accents.

The opening "A Face for Radio" is a great riff-driven rocker that combines certain 70s rock elements with more modern indie elements, while "Ah, Sugar" is an amusing highlight thanks to humorous lyrics (that are actually about a sugar addiction for the most part) and quirky theatrical production. "Texas is the Reason" is something of a more straightforward up-tempo bass-driven number with excellent electronic accents. "You Can't Get There" combines a moody piano-centered ballad with a theatrically intense rock number to close the disc.

Overall, Spiraling's Challenging Stage combines strong songwriting, performances, and production into a melodic alt rock blend that ranges from energetic and catchy to quirky and playful. While it's hard to judge a band based on a mere 16 minutes of material, all 4 songs on Challenging Stage are excellent and certainly worth a listen.

 

Spiraling website: www.spiraling.net

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