The Mirror World EP

Object

Independent release, 2005

REVIEW BY: Benjamin Ray

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 05/05/2006

Of the dozens of bands around New York City, the duo Object is one of the more interesting. It's not that they are particularly original -- it's too easy to play "spot the alternative rock influence" -- but they have a particular fire and purpose in their rock that could potentially explode into something great.

The band is Maria Schettino on drums and Eric Kramer on guitar and vocals. New York University buddies, the two instantly bonded and became jam partners, eventually scoring time in the studio to record a disc in 2002. After playing several gigs in the city, they were able to record this disc in 2005, although their sometimes bass player has left and turned them into a duo again.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Kramer tries to be many things, and throughout the five songs succeeds at channeling Incubus, Nirvana, the Foo Fighters and a bit of punk ethos. Granted, without a bass player and with only five songs, this feels like an indie recording, but with a little fine tuning it doesn't have to. The band has that kind of potential.

Schettino, in particular, drums her heart out more than most modern rock drummers, and it's refreshing to hear that kind of energy in these decidedly downcast songs. Kramer is a typical power-chord guitarist, but his success will be with his voice (the lyrics are standard fare for the genre) -- at times, he sounds like a mix of Cobain and Brandon Boyd, evoking feelings of nostalgia for those of us who grew up on alternative rock.

"Talk Too Much" sounds like Incubus circa Science, but Kramer adds an occasional screaming chorus that takes away from the song's power; aggression doesn't equal screaming. "Walk Away" is uncomfortably close to Nirvana, but I'd imagine most bands finding their feet sound like their influences at first. Besides, of all the bands to emulate, Nirvana is still the ideal for most bands today.

An interesting riff opens "The 8th Floor," and the whole song sort of glides by on a faint-but-detectable psychedelic haze, sort of like STP meets Incubus in 1996. "Fooled" is a decent opener, more interesting for what it suggests than how it turns out. And the "epic" closer "Open Sores" has a sort of quiet menace and the most emotional vocal from Kramer, though the pre-chorus sounds a bit underdeveloped. The sleigh bells are a nice addition, though.

Object has a ways to go before truly capturing their own sound, but at the moment there are no bands that can truly emulate Nirvana and Incubus and still sound this good. With a bass and some production, the band will find their sound, and with time they will find their voice. In short, The Mirror World may not be original, but it's promising.

Rating: B-

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