"Always and Never" (Range Records; 2006)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

On their MySpace page, Noosphere list their influences as "Breaking Benjamin, Tool, Pantera, Killswitch Engage, Sevendust, Slipknot, etc." Listening to their CD, "Always and Never," one can clearly hear pieces of all of the above listed bands; in fact, perhaps too much.

There's no denying the band's talent. The music here is tight, the vocals strong, the songwriting solid. It's just that nothing here sounds fresh or unique. The band comes closest to delivering their own sound on the slower tracks, especially the final track, "Waiting." Otherwise, "Always and Never" sounds very much like a lot of other bands out there.

Modern rock with an aggressive edge, "Always and Never" is a solid CD, even if it's not particularly original. Fans of the above-listed bands will no doubt find the album entertaining, although perhaps not as memorable as albums by the bands Noosphere lists as influences.

Noosphere: Thommy Michaels - Vocals; Kevin Hightower - Guitar; Frank Wright - Guitar; Morgan Phillips - Bass; Joe Armstrong - Drums.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.


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Copyright 2008 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 06 Mar 2022 14:38:31 -0500 .