Up until recently I've remained fairly indifferent to the number of followers I have on Twitter. After all, if my ego was dependent on the number of people following me I would just drop the $5 necessary to buy a few thousand and call it a night.
Ever since I started writing here at Rocks Off I've noticed random musical groups from across the country following me. These are people I've never talked to or talked about, from places I've never been. They never reply, retweet or favorite anything I say. It feels oddly impersonal.
Since they aren't interested in communicating with me, I've never felt the need to follow them back, which I can only assume makes me a bad Twitter friend.
So today I've decided to do them one better. Someone somewhere had to take the time out of their day to hit the follow button on my Twitter account. If they were nice enough to do that I figure the least I can do is give them 30 seconds of my time to give them a brutally honest review of their music.
St8 Of Grace (@st8ofgrace1) Twitter Bio: If you like Rock n Roll Music... you'll enjoy listening to A refreshing Chicago Band called ST8 OF GRACE these guy's play some of Today best sound n bands Song Reviewed: "Not Myself" When I Stopped The Song: 2:25/3:33
Some bands are victims of fate -- they're either ahead of their time and misunderstood, or arrive too late playing a sound that's fallen out of fashion. When the song was upbeat I found myself thinking that with a better budget and cleaner sound these guys would be right at home in modern-rock radio.
Then the rap thing started and just... ugh. The first time I looked past it because I wanted to hear the hook, which wasn't bad, but the second time I just wasn't feeling it. If I want to hear substandard rapping in a rock song I have plenty of CDs from the late '90s at my disposal. Keep working on the riffs and see how things go from there, gentlemen.
Mark Jones and Twenty Paces (@MJandXXP) Twitter Bio: We're a band. We like Whataburger. And boutique amps. And breaking stuff. And barbeque. If you're having a barbeque, we want to come. Song Reviewed: "Wild Eyed, Fast and Free" When I Stopped The Song: 3:13/4:00
Let's talk about first impressions. Looking at the time-elapsed stat above you can correctly guess that I thought the song was, at the very least, decent. I thought the song was slightly better than that, to be honest, which is weird because this isn't typically my type of music.
The problem here is that the version on their Website is from a live recording which is full of crowd noise. I'm not talking people cheering, although there is some of that; I'm talking about people having conversations that are just loud enough to be distracting and annoying.
Gentlemen, this was the first thing that played on your Website; ask yourself if that is really putting your best foot forward.
Consider Me Dead (@CMDofficial) Twitter Bio: Pop/Electronic band from Arizona! Song Reviewed: "Breathe Me In" When I Stopped The Song: 3:51/3:51
I totally understand why these guys have over 96,000 followers, even though the song left me conflicted. On one hand there were things I really liked: The production is good, the synth sounds are really nice, and the song was never boring.
On the other hand, the vocals in the chorus left a lot to be desired and I kept wishing it would hit a point where the song picked up some speed. Is this what goes for a ballad in the post-Breathe Carolina world? I think these guys have a future, or at least a couple of summers on the Warped Tour, and if they do I hope it means some instrumental versions of their tracks will find their way online.
Almost There (@AlmostThereRock) Twitter Bio: good ol' fashioned NJ rock! Song Reviewed: "I Cried Wolf" When I Stopped The Song: 3:20/3:20
From their bio I was expecting something a bit more Bon Jovi, but seeing as how New Jersey does have a history of pumping out solid pop-punk acts I won't ding these guys for false advertising.
They have the sound and the feel down and wouldn't feel out of place if they happened to open for Bouncing Souls or Senses Fail. I liked the slightly harder edge to the guitar solo, but felt that the vocals were a bit flat and uninspired. They have the fundamentals down but they need to build on those to find a sound that is a bit more them and a little less everyone else.
Moovalya (@Moovalya) Twitter Bio: Fast music from Phoenix. Song Reviewed: "To The Throne" When I Stopped The Song: 2:33/2:33
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I'll confess that I had a pretty big grin on my face at the start of the track; I'm a sucker for that type of intro to a song. If I have any complaints it's that the lyrics in the verses are occasionally a bit cheesy and the transition out of the first chorus is a bit weird. That out of the way, I actually really liked this quite a bit, to the point of seriously considering dropping the dollar to buy it on iTunes.
I just love what they're doing in the chorus: The melody is on point, the lyrics would be fun to sing with a crowd, and it's the perfect length. Now if I just had any clue how you pronounce their name.