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"Terraforming" (Now or Never Records)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

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The foundation of The Postman Syndrome is metalcore, but there are a multitude of arty tangents to the band's unique sound and style. Elements of grunge, avant-garde, jazz, neo-garage rock, alt-metal, progressive, and just about everything else manages to creep into the Syndrome's musical palette. 

Musically, The Postman Syndrome concoct complex yet accessible songs that push boundaries you think are non-mainstream yet somehow manage to pull you back in with catchy, but whacked-out melodies. Despite the expansive nature of the material everything on "Terraforming" works. The songs are self-contained within themselves (even the two-part tracks) and even across the album's twelve tracks. Whether this was a happy accident or by design I'll never know.

The arrangements are conducive to a variety of emotive expression - no doubt this helps the band cover as much ground emotionally and sonically. The Postman Syndrome use diverse arrangements as a way of not repeating themselves. There isn't a verse-chorus-verse-bridge-chorus track on "Terraforming" - and you should thank your lucky stars for that. Even after repeated listens it's hard to easily identify any section of a song being repeated in the traditional sense.

The Postman Syndrome take a fresh approach vocally as well. Four of the five band members vocalize and it's this facet of the band's style that helps The Postman Syndrome avoid easy comparisons to other acts.

Someone once said that The Postman Syndrome goes where other bands fear to tread. I'll take it a step further and say that The Postman Syndrome goes where other bands haven't dreamt or conceived of existing. The Postman Syndrome defies categorization and it's refreshing to hear a band that is willing to follow its own muse rather than follow trends or other tried and true formulas. Bands like this keep the music industry on their toes, business wonks and fans alike. 

"Terraforming" is one of the most refreshing albums of 2002 and I can't wait to hear more.

"Terraforming" is a unique release that would appeal to fans that are attracted to the non-mainstream leanings of Tool, Candiria, Maudlin of the Well, Dog Fashion Disco, and System Of A Down as well as the hardcore and metalcore crowds. I don't mean to sound like such a fucking elitist but you'll really need an open mind when listening to "Terraforming."

The Postman Syndrome is Matt Lupo on guitar, trumpet, and vocals; Chris Alfano on guitar and vocals; Jim Stang on guitar and vocals, Brett Bamberger on bass and vocals; and Mike Somers on drums and percussion.

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Rating Guide:

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) A classic. This record will kick your ass.

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) So-so. You've heard better.

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

restinks.jpg (954 bytes) Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2002 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 07 Mar 2021 19:26:15 -0500.