Thursday, June 6, 2013

In This Moment - The Dream (2008)

In This Moment started life in 2005, changing their name from Dying Star, along with their musical direction. Fronted by sassy lass, Maria Brink, they have released four albums and developed a fanbase via MySpace, internet marketing and plenty of small gigs. They hail from Los Angeles, California.

"The Dream" is their second album, released in 2008. Mine is a digipack edition and it is rather whimsical in apperance - designed to look like a sepia-toned novel. The cover depicts a raven, a cute fuzzy bunny rabbit and a heart-shaped clock-flower. Inside, things take a somewhat more sinister bend with the spooky fly-rabbit adorning the cd, and some rather creepy photographs flanking the lyric booklet. The lyrics are illustrated with cartoons of Alice in Wonderland characters, each bearing a striking resemblance to the band member pictured beside them.

It is also a cd rom, and appears to contain a video file for "Forever", along with an audio interview with the band.

The album opens with the eerie and dreamy "The Rabbit Hole" before rocking in to "Forever". A bouncy, catchy pop-come-metal piece, this is one track guaranteed to get the audience bopping up and down. Brink's voice is one of those sweet-and-innocent-but-secretly-malicious that I tend to associate with the deviant school girl or gothic lolita. I can almost imagine her prancing around in a tutu and splashing about in the waves. But then again, that might be just because I watched the video.

"All For You" follows similar themes. Steady rock rhythms, keyboards and guitars, boppy and poppy.

We tone things down a bit for "Lost at Sea" where a desperate and haunted edge lends itself to Brink's voice.

"Mechanical Love" brings us back into the steady rock rhythms, boppy choruses, bringing with it a steady dose of relationship angst:
"Oh, and you'll never understand me...."
 A dark and disconcerting piece, "Her Kiss" starts with a spoken whisper, before being overwhelmed by surging guitars, and Brink's soaring vocals cut in, sounding pure and sweet until she falls into the more familiar boppy-poppy rhythms we've grown used to. The song builds into a dramatic climax before fading out once more into..

This is followed by the soft and delicate "Into the Light" with plenty of piano in a shadow of a reflection of Evanescence's "My Immortal". Brink can sound rather sweet when she wants to.

"You Always Believed" sounds like a bitch song - the sort of "you're gone and I'm better off without you" track that was popular of around this era. This feeling is directly contridicted by the lyrics:
"And you held me through it all, and you never let me fall. And you let me fly away and you always believed..."
 As far as love songs go, it's not very convincing!

"The Great Divide" is another heavier number, with Brink squawking like a ferocious speed-metal chick over pounding drums. The chorus is more familiar ITM, although tinged with anger and desperation.

A surging rock number with shouted vocals, "Violet Skies" brings us back into the rockin', kick-arse chick feel.

We conclude with the slow and gentle "The Dream" which seems a fitting way to end the album.

Except it's not the end - for we have two bonus tracks. They're nothing to write home about - one is another version of "Forever" and the second is an instrumental version of "Forever".

Overall, not a bad album but rather reminiscent of the era - Evanescence, Pink, No Doubt and any of those female bitchy-kick-arse-chick singers that I never really paid much attention to, being rather caught in the nostalgias of the past. The songs are a nice variety of soft and fast, boppy and heavy but alas for ITM, Brink's vocals let them down with her typical vocal style getting very tedious after a few tracks. She's good when she sings it slow or lets her voice soar, she should do that more.

I ummed and ahhed between a 6 and a 7, and eventually settled on the good ol' 6.5/10.

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