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Taft, Austin: Skeletons

Austin Taft is an American musician that describes his music as “Prog-Metal-That-Sometimes-Isn’t.” In reality that can be considered to be a fairly broad statement and yes I sometimes hear prog metal, and sometimes I hear something else. On his new album titled Skeletons, Taft wrote all the tunes and plays everything himself, as well as handling the production.

Taft is undoubtedly a talented musician and knows how to write heavy and catchy songs that have depth and diversity. One moment the music is intense and at other times a pretty melody or even pop-like moments crop up. The problem I have with this album is not the music but the vocals. There is a large amount of screaming here that I find extremely difficult to listen to thus inhibiting my overall enjoyment. I give credit to Taft’s musicianship and song writing as he is clearly talented in both areas but if the vocals are unlistenable, of course this will come down to individual preference, it is a tough one for me to swallow. And this comes from someone who can appreciate the occasional growl. Even when the music becomes much less intense the screaming vocals may be heard. I cannot help but imagine how a more refined touch would have made a world of difference to some of these tracks. Maybe the dark subject matter or the angry nature of the lyrics, and I admit Taft brings up many justified reasons for feeling angry, are reasons for his vocal choice.

Regardless, if Taft would get a different vocalist or is able to turn down the screaming, I think it would help this music immensely. Of course, that is just one person’s opinion, so you be the judge.

Track Listing:
1. Skeletons
2. Endless Sky
3. A Winning Strategy
4. The Ladder
5. Diminishing Returns
6. Just Above Zero
7. The Line
8. Unraveling
9. The Road To Happiness

Added: April 11th 2021
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Artist's Official Site
Hits: 708
Language: english

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