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Sententia: The Center In The Sand

Sententia is a Boston based band that is essentially the work Of Dede Booth who plays all instruments except for drums which were programmed/engineered by Peter Moore. The band has been around for about three years now and The Center In The Sand, released in 2009, is the their first full length album.

Dede Booth has made a mellow gothic rock album with a few progressive twists and a mild folk influence. This is a darkly melancholic record where Booth's ethereal vocal delivery is one of the main highlights. Even though she has a slightly monotone delivery I like her voice as her laid back style is a good fit for her ambient/gothic rock aesthetics. The instrumentation is fairly sparse with guitar and drums being the instruments of choice. There is a mixture of acoustic and electric guitar with many of the heavier riffs set in the background and the dreamier acoustic strums more up front. There is a nice flow to the album as the songs do not vary too much from one another although I did want to hear a little more variation between the songs. As you can imagine this is not happy, feel good music and Dede's lyrics come from a darker place as she seems to exercise a few inner demons.

Some of the better songs include "Fall Behind" featuring a nicely layered vocal arrangement as well as haunting title track with its plaintive acoustic strumming, subtle electrified chords and tasty drum work. It features a sad melody but it has the ability to hang around inside your head long after the song has ended.

This record is a slow grower so do not expect to be blown away on the very first listen. The melodies need time to sink in and it may be too melancholic for many listeners. I also think Dede would benefit from a full backing band as the music would be much more powerful. That said, The Center In The Sand is a solid debut and worth a listen for those who appreciate the softer side of goth rock with mournful melodies sprinkled throughout.

Track Listing:
1. What You Decide
2. Crippled
3. The Center in the Sand
4. Weep
5. Fall Behind
6. Nothing less than Ordinary
7. Surrender
8. I Don't Recall
9. Don't be Afraid
10. Blue Skies
11. Will You Embrace This

Added: February 6th 2011
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Artist's MySpace Page
Hits: 1898
Language: english

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