Existence: Small People, Short Story, Little Crime
Having just reviewed the impressive Live in Montreal CD I was looking forward to diving into Small People, Short Story, Little Crime, their sophomore effort released in 1999.
First off a little mention of the CD packaging. The disc comes in a cardboard slip case and a massive fifty-six page booklet. The format is in magazine style which includes a number of articles, each one relating to a song from the album. The lyrics can be found within the articles. The 'magazine' also contains advertising, letters to the editor and CD and film reviews. On a humourous note there is a negative review the album, earning a mediocre rating. The band's sense of humour was clearly intact.
The album begins with the hard rock one two punch of "The Therapy, part 1" and "Beauty Teen", although the first track is under a minute and is essentially a drum solo, it demonstrates the drummer's considerable chops. "No Hero" is more interesting with chiming guitar chords, eerie violin textures and a ripping guitar solo. The band's progressive nature shines through in the twenty-two minute epic "In The Kingdom Of Madness" featuring melancholic piano, a fantastic guitar solo in the more ominous "Darkness" and some wild violin work throughout. At times the music is quite ominous and sorrowful exemplifying the dark subject matter. The lead vocals do a great job expressing the overall mood of the story.
Another excellent track is the instrumental "Another Fine Day Of…" where all the band members play with fire exploring Eastern flavoured heavy prog before slowing with gentle guitar, atmospheric bass and majestic violin.
If you have yet to hear this fine Canadian band there is no better place to start than this album. Small People, Short Story, Little Crime is a criminally underrated effort from a band that will hopefully bring us some new music in the coming year.
1. The Therapy, part I (0:53)
2. Beauty Teen (5:28)
3. No Hero (4:18)
4. The Journey (4:03)
5. Dripping Cloud (In The Kingdom Of Madness Pt. 1) (3:07)
6. No Sun Can Shine (In The Kingdom Of Madness Pt. 2) (5:49)
7. Darkness (In The Kingdom Of Madness Pt. 3) (3:48)
8. Delirium (In The Kingdom Of Madness Pt. 4) (2:13)
9. Open Letter To My Friends (In The Kingdom Of Madness Pt. 5) (4:37)
10. Farewell From The Lone Poet (In The Kingdom Of Madness Pt. 6) (3:04)
11. Whispers (The Theme, part IV) (2:25)
12. Business As Usual (5:08)
13. Flowers Won't Do? (5:21)
14. Another Fine Day Of… (7:29)
15. Overtime (4:48)
16. The Therapy, part II (0:02)
Added: May 19th 2015
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Label's Official Site
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