About a year ago I was invited to see Monster Eiffel Tower, a Brooklyn Rock trio who were playing at the Knitting Factory. I was not particularly excited to go to the show. For starters, their music was described to me as being a little harder and more experimental than my usual tastes. There was a period in my life when I was going to Mars Volta shows, but I never knew what the fuck they were talking about (exo-skeletal junction at the railroad delayed?) and have since become far wussier in my musical selection.
Also, I know two of the people in the band. This is not to say that the two band members aren’t intelligent and charming people (they are), but in my life I have rarely enjoyed my friends’ bands, poetry sessions and, especially, improv groups (maybe improv in general just pisses me off). Anyway, up until this point, I had never seen these two with instruments, and assumed they were as bad as my friend in eighth grade who wrote a bizarre Bob Dylan knock-off called “Story of a Dead Man” which pretty much featured one verse and a lot of mumbling (he made me listen to it over one thousand times).
To say that I was proven wrong is an understatement. It would have been one thing if the band had been simply tolerable, but the fact that I actually like them? Weird. Since that first show, I’ve seen them play multiple shows at Lit, Galapagos, Arlene’s Grocery and Trash Bar. I have their album now (available here), and I have since found myself quietly singing the lyrics to Dock War, or humming the tune to the amusingly epic Skyscraper Halo while riding the subway. The album clearly defines the band’s stronger points: the ways singer Andrew Kennedy’s voice can go from a whisper to a resonant, throaty yell to match the insanely quick rhythm changes from bassist Peter Squires and drummer Caleb Webster, who can instantly turn prog-metal into anthemic pop-punk without skipping a beat (pun intended). It’s difficult to tell which direction any song is going to go, and that’s a lot of the fun.
In any case, I recommend checking out the album. I know that I may be biased due to my friendship with them, but in the past my relationship with musicians has only made me more skeptical of their music. And seriously, this shit just rocks.