"Visual Audio Sensory Theater" (Elektra)
Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter
VAST is one man's singular view on the human element on dual
intricacies of a man's dealing with spirituality and love. I say spirituality only because
to say religion would not be accurate enough; there are many obvious references to typical
religious elements of shame, guilt, the creation of woman, and faith.
Jon Crosby is VAST. Crosby handles all vocals, guitars, bass, keyboards, and other assorted noises. Crosby crafts music that combines the electronic elements of NIN, the gothic guitars of many bands, sweeping keyboards that both underlie the music and generate atmosphere, and varying rhythms. Crosby is ably assisted by various personnel helping him with drums, cellos, and orchestration.
One particularly good track is "Three Doors." The music pulses with a driving electronic beat, yet the keyboards and guitars give the rest of the tune a really interesting sheen. Other good songs include "I'm Dying" and "Touched." The very powerful "I'm Dying" has a smooth keyboard sound over the top of a pulsating bass riff and great sustained guitars adding to the wall of sound at the end of the tune. "Touched" has the sound of recent U2, yet isn't so similar that you think you're hearing Bono and Edge.
Fred Maher shores up the production end. Maher's also worked with Information Society, Matthew Sweet, and Luna. The album is mixed by Andy Wallace and most metal fans are familiar with his work in various producing and mixing roles, with Slayer, Helmet, Sepultura, White Zombie, Faith No More, and Limp Bizkit.
This is not heavy disc in the traditional sense, but it is engaging. To know that there isn't an album like this readily available by other artists is reason enough to celebrate its uniqueness.
For more information, visit Elektra's official site at: http://www.elektra.com/ambient_club/vast/vast.html
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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Revised: 16 Sep 2005 19:50:23 -0500.