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Milwaukee’s best are anything but light

December 6, 2009

World Travels Fast
December 1, 2009

When Radiohead made the genius marketing decision to offer their album “In Rainbows” for whatever price consumers felt fair they had a grand scheme to “stick it to the man” and point out the inadequacies of the recording industry model.

The idea, however, has spawned into something much more beautiful, and has given many unsigned bands and independent labels the chance to market their music to wonderful success.

I, personally, am a big fan of this system because if I really enjoy the music, I am going to purchase a hard copy of whatever I am listening to.

I found my next purchase.

Milwaukee based rock band Decibully released their latest album, “World Travels Fast,” without a label, making it available at Listening Party Records last week on vinyl, CD and, you guessed it, pay-as-you-wish digital download. If it weren’t for the low price of this album I might not have heard it for weeks or months, and then I would really be the one missing out.

Decibully’s sound is probably best described as progressive, but less because they fit the progressive stereotype and more because they create music that represents an amalgam of different musical styles.

“World Travels Fast” and “Don’t Believe the Hype” exemplify roots-rock and blues influences, while indie sensibilities of “Get in the Car” and “Weakest Kind of Heart” present a more subdued side of the band though it carries with it a sharp edge.

One of the more interesting tracks on the album is the acoustic number “Baby’s Mama,” which has a jazz beat and a serial killer’s lyrics. It is chilling and beautiful, as William Siedel cries out the refrain, “As soon as I get over you, I’ll be coming over … I’m coming back for you,” the sense of foreboding is intense.

Siedel’s strong vocal presence really helps make “World Travels Fast” what it is. His voice falls on a continuum between Anthony Green of Circa Survive and Cedric Bixler-Zavala of The Mars Volta, but deeper and more gentle than either.

His unique howl compliments the band’s style very well. The sweetness in his voice helps to push the message of the song to the foreground of the music.

That music, however, is no slouch; the band uses different tempos and volumes to create a really diverse sound.

“Live by the Lake” stands out as one of the most enjoyable tracks on the album, with the combination of powerfully charging guitars and a strong back beat met with a My Morning Jacket-esque jam in the middle of the song.

Decibully is unafraid to let their music do the talking in many of the songs, often presenting those instrumental bridges in their songs. They do it with precision and without muddling or making it seem forced.

Conversely, songs like “Little White Girl” go off completely without any instrumental breaks and kills. The song relies heavily upon the beat and the vocals, but the guitar and keys chiming out behind them compliment it beautifully.

Overall, this album is solid and well put together. For their first album without the support of their former label Polyvinyl, it is very strong. For the price, it doesn’t get much better.

This is one that deserves to be bought. The album is available to be downloaded at Listening Party Records. Find out for yourself and spread the word.

Live By The Lake
Don’t Believe the Hype
Baby’s Mama

Originally printed in The Daily Vidette.

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