Orbital Groove

Angel Anton

Tai-Khan Records, 2000


REVIEW BY: Christopher Thelen


There is eclectic music... and then there's just weird. Angel Anton falls under the latter category.

This three-piece group, led by guitarist Marcel Anton (who has been known to take the stage wearing only a pair of Speedos - well, guess it's better than the infamous Red Hot Chili Peppers tube sock), claims to have a Frank Zappa-like vibe to their music on their disc my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Orbital Groove. All I know is that, if Frank were alive to hear that claim, he'd lay waste to these guys so fast it would make their instruments explode.

Problem number one with this disc: lack of a strong vocalist. Whoever told Anton he had a singing voice should have their hearing checked; if he indeed is the one providing the pipes on tracks like "Beatles Medley," his vocals are wobblier than a house of cards and thinner than a sheet of rice paper. His bandmates - bassist Gary Vaughan and drummer Leon Abner - are only marginally better.

Problem numbr two: aimless musical styling. On one side, it sounds like Angel Anton is going for an island groove at times; at others, they try to bring in the funk (and don't do nearly as well). Tracks like "Tomorrow," "Hot & Wendy" and "I Dream Of You" suggest that Angel Anton just doesn't know which direction they should be taking their music - and until they do make that decision, they shouldn't unleash such uncertainty on an unsuspecting audience.

Problem number three: Orbital Groove leads the listener to expect that they're about to hear musical expertise so great that their speakers will melt. That kind of a moment comes only once - on the instrumental track "Malibu". Unfortunately, the weaknesses of this group sometimes outweigh the moments that one would normally pick as stand-outs. "Lady X" might have been a killer track... if someone else had done it. Vaughan is made out to be an incredible five-string bassist... too bad his work is often buried in a sonic mess.

Yeah, I know I should be more supportive to an upstart band, especially one on a smaller label... but Angel Anton makes it almost impossible to like them, and Orbital Groove is a disc which just grates on the listener's ears. It's hell trying to get through Angel Anton's Orbital Groove, and I just wish someone would stop the music.

Rating: D-

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2001 Christopher Thelen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Tai-Khan Records, and is used for informational purposes only.