Friday, April 18, 2014

CASSETTE REVIEW: The Exploration “Demography” (Driftwood Records)

            I’ve always been of the belief that any music can sound good on cassette so long as it is good itself because I feel cassettes are the optimal medium to experience recorded music.  In the late ‘90’s and early ’00;s, I was getting demo tapes of hardcore bands handed to me literally on cassette and well, yeah, Earth Crisis still sounds good, even on cassette.  If anything, being on cassette just makes a good band sound better.

            When “Demography” starts, it is a screamy bit of emo that can come out somewhere between skramz and mewithoutYou.   The thing is, throughout the cassette, The Exploration does in fact manage to go back and forth from that base to other styles of similar interest, which include math rock and just the all around melodic feel of music.

            The Exploration is a band that should really just speak to you both lyrically and musically.  With other forms of recorded music (Specifically records and CDs) they are so flat, so one dimensional.   Cassettes- and one of the reasons why I love them so much- are three dimensional.    If you crack a record, it stays broken.  A CD isn’t anything but a sturdier record with lasers instead of needles.  A cassette though… A cassette can be opened up, whether unscrewed or broken, and it can show you its insides.   A cassette has gears turning.  A cassette is complex.

            Needless to say, it seems only fitting that the layers involved in “Demography”, with the passion and just all around heartfelt emotion, should be on the medium which also can convey the strongest emotion.  A cassette can be broken up, the spool of tape falling out and tangled.  But these songs can just as easily bust you open and leave you vulnerable and exposed.  

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