Reviews

Cassettes Won’t Listen can still get you to listen

EVINSPACEY

Evinspacey

Cassettes Won't Listen

Release Date: Jun 21, 11

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When was the last time an actor became a musician, or vice versa? Probably earlier today. But how about when the two worlds, of actors and musicians, collide indirectly? Jason Drake, recording artist Cassettes Won’t Listen, titled his new release Kevinspacey as a play on the idea of space itself – with nary a word to do with the American Beauty star; unfortunately, Spacey felt otherwise and ordered a cease-and-desist to Drake. Behold the new album, Evinspacey. Full of space-fulfilling amplifiers, the album fails to really bring any impressive mix to the table. Of course, no one said simple couldn’t impress.

Two beats that seem to not match up exactly open “Friendly Float,” overlaid with angry crowd sounds replaced by a voice that announces, “This next one is the first song on my new album.” Thanks for that, Drake. It becomes something you might hear while playing Portal, or some other experimental puzzle game. Friendly for sure, it floats as much as a basic pearl drop repetition can.

Bringing in lyrics on “Perfect Day,” the minimal message is like some Moby 2.0 project (unrelated to his track “The Day” off his new release Destroyed), soft words that fade into each other and a drum lapse that makes me think I could make the track in GarageBand myself. Which is just another reason to enjoy it. More song than sound, the 4:16 pass quickly in the steady-clap that alerts you the end has come. I almost play it again.

All clichés aside, on the third track we finally have a really spacey intro. Lower tones in still simplified beats, the harmony between music and lyrics make me feel like “The Echoes” could easily make it onto the radio with the help of a big-name remix. Whether or not that’s the goal, it definitely feels like this is just the base coating for something more mind-blowing. Or just something more of what the title may suggest.

The most commercial track of Evinspacey, “Wave To The Winners” is like a hybrid between The Postal Service and the pop-punk scene of, say, Bamboozle or Warped. Can indie rockers wear neon? Does it blur the line between genres if they do? Does this track make you think of these things too?

The first self-conscious song to the album, “Pick Me Out” begins synthetically enough only to start mentioning how “the party goes on and I haven’t even made my move.” The continued first-person perspective seems to strip whatever musical fluidity was had to the previous songs, now just seeming like a desperate plea for a song, as he sings “I’ve been waiting,/ trying to get your attention.” Obviously.

Strange how the last track is called “Waiting.” And as it starts, the blip-glitches to the sound, like “Colouring of Pigeons,” make me realize this is what I’ve been waiting for on the album. The unrecognizable elements laid over the uninterrupted musical tones (beats, twinkles, claps, etc) keep a consistent build-up of suspension and progression – and then after 2:18 it’s all over. And so is Evinspacey. And for a moment I wonder why.