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The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    Linwood’s “Burn Effect”

    Today’s music scene might seem a bit jumbled, but new band Linwood provides a pretty solid sound compared to the new experimental wave of genre-mixing groups out there. The band has an interesting history, as their website states that vocalist Bob Lindsey and guitarist Scott Coopwood were brought together through medical school. They met between sections of their entrance exam and discussed music regularly, thus sparking their interest in collaborating. Lindsey’s then-active band was invited to record in Coopwood’s studio and after graduating college, the members each went their separate ways. Several years later, Lindsey ran into Coopwood again in Mississippi, and the two started a new group, recording 22 songs and releasing demos. Their debut album, “Burn Effect,” is finally available through Waxsaw Records.

    As I mentioned earlier, “Burn Effect” has a generally consistent sound, but the problem is that it isn’t particularly refreshing. Lindsey appropriately states that music trends are of no importance to the band. This is credible, given the fact that the songs on “Burn Effect” are reminiscent of ’90s alternative without the vulgar edge that left so many youths with rebellious tastes in their mouths, rather than the screeching, angst-driven or lighter, poetic rock that is popular today.

    In fact, Linwood’s aim seems to be going in another direction altogether. It isn’t attempting to develop the qualities of an anthem, be it designed for the furious teenager or the pissed-off girlfriend from hell. Instead, “Burn Effect” is more of a collective expression of emotion, ranging from gentle romantic frustration to passive desire. The album has a very personal feel, as the songs seem to collectively embody a singular character. Listening to it feels like experiencing a narrative that guides you through the story of his feelings, which is a nice touch.

    One of the low points of the album is the abuse of repetition. On almost every track, the chorus is repeated over and over again, not only throughout the song, but especially at the end. Normally this would be acceptable, but after listening to the same cheesy rhyming schemes for five or six times straight before finally hearing the end can be irritating. This is most prevalent in the tracks “Lie To You,” “Believe,” and “Are U Awake.” Sometimes, this repetitive style actually seems functional, as if struggling to affirm a specific statement, as in “Circle.” Unfortunately, this generally makes the tracks seem very short.

    Linwood has also established a very mature, weary tone throughout this album. Lindsey’s vocals aren’t harsh and he never screams, but his style is raw and simple. The music itself is often catchy and usually upbeat. It’s a decent mixed chronology of American rock music all on one album.

    Notable tracks include “Sentimental Conversation,” which is a favorite because of its relaxed, soaring vocals backed by a dreamlike melody, and “The Dead,” for its upbeat guitar and assertive vocals.

    Ultimately, “Burn Effect” is the sort of go-to album you just want to pop into your music player and dance carelessly around your room in your pajamas. Linwood’s lyrics aren’t the most creative, and their music isn’t particularly progressive. However, their work is decent to listen to if you’re looking for something quick and catchy. Look for their album on iTunes and music stores across the country.

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