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Signal to Noise - Kodiak (Cover Artwork)

Signal to Noise

Signal to Noise: KodiakKodiak (2007)
Eyeball Records

Reviewer Rating: 3
User Rating:


Contributed by: sickboiChris
(others by this writer | submit your own)

There are certain terms used far too often when speaking about music. Referring to an album as "overproduced" is usually pretty absurd. Who doesn't want their album to sound great, and not like it was recorded for SST in the mid 1980's, right? Well, the only problem is that overproduction can lead t.
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There are certain terms used far too often when speaking about music. Referring to an album as "overproduced" is usually pretty absurd. Who doesn't want their album to sound great, and not like it was recorded for SST in the mid 1980's, right? Well, the only problem is that overproduction can lead to a slight, or significant change in a group's overall sound. As is the case with Colorado's Signal to Noise, and their Eyeball Records debut, Kodiak.

Signal to Noise play your typical post-hardcore style of music. The traces of influence from bands like Hot Water Music, Jawbreaker, Jimmy Eat World and Sparta are obvious in the album's best tracks: "The Weather Machine," "The Wolves" and "Radiation." All three probably sound amazing live; however on Kodiak the production leans towards making these songs more polished than they should to be. That's bothersome, because STN write great songs, play them well, and are very honest and passionate about the music, which is clearly obvious in the actual delivery of the songs.

Generally, overproduction is used to cover something, or to add something a band is not capable of. Maybe a lack of technical ability, or vocals that need more work. This is what really frustrates me about Kodiak. STN are a great band. They write memorable songs, with catchy hooks, and well-arranged choruses and song structures. The dual vocals, trading off between melodic singing and gruff shouting, blend perfectly. The majority of the songs on Kodiak are anthemic, and condusive to a style that is clearly the band's own. However, the cleaner, crisper style in which the final mastering takes place with the material it causes the music to sound flat, and the vocals less urgent.

To some, these concerns may sound trivial or unimportant. I guess you will just have to judge for yourself. Overall, Kodiak is a good record, but with one minor flaw that really hurts the band by trying to add an aspect that simply isn't needed.

 

 
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Hot Water Music - A Flight and a CrashNew Atlantic - The Streets, The Sounds, And the LoveBroadway Calls - Broadway CallsThe Blackout Pact - Hello SailorThe Tiny - Starring; Someone Like YouExplosions in the Sky - All of a Sudden I Miss EveryoneThe Sidekicks - So Long, Soggy DogThe Flatliners - The Great AwakeBear Vs Shark - TerrorhawkThe Lawrence Arms - Oh! Calcutta!

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (June 11, 2007)

Can't appease everyone, Chris! You can't change how you feel. Good review.

I have to admit though...it doesn't sound "over produced" to me, it sounds "clean". To me that's a HUGE difference. Over produced would mean massive amounts of layering, pro-tools glory and auto-tune. I don't think that has anything to do with being "tone deaf", it's just personal recording preference. This recording is sparse and spot on. Hold KODIAK up next to the new Fall Out Boy CD and you'll hear how UNDERproduced it is.

sickboi (June 11, 2007)

Wow. You must be completely tone deaf. I personally love the songs on here, and think the band has an amazing sound. Unfortunately, the album is way too polished, to the point where is actually makes them sound like a different band. Sorry, but that's how I feel.

-Chris

Anonymous (June 11, 2007)

I just got the album and it kicks ass from the first track to the last, can't wait to see them live!

Anonymous (June 10, 2007)

how about writing a review about how bad this guys is. kodiak sounds great and is anything but over produced. opinions are like assholes and clearly this guy doesnt wipe

Kursk (June 9, 2007)

I haven't heard all of this album but the songs I have heard like "The Wolves" and "This Side of Texas" do not sound over produced to me, in fact they sound great. And this band is really fucking good too by the way, one of Eyeball's best recent signings.

lover13 (June 8, 2007)

I love this album! I think the production makes it sound huge and great! Like Chris said, Kodiak is:

"memorable songs, with catchy hooks, and well-arranged choruses and song structures. The dual vocals, trading off between melodic singing and gruff shouting, blend perfectly. The majority of the songs on Kodiak are anthemic, and condusive to a style that is clearly the band's own."

It's too bad this review focuses almost entirely on production, only one small aspect of everyhing that goes into making a great record. In my humble opinion, the production works. Can't stop listening!

inagreendase (June 8, 2007)

This album's pretty good. Christ that dude that sounds like Jim Ward though.

rkl (June 8, 2007)

There are certain terms used far too often when speaking about music
yeah, like post-hardcore.

thus_spoke_sean (June 8, 2007)

you could take this whole review and replace STN with Monty Are I. that is the most sever case of over production my ears have ever witnessed.

the_other_scott (June 8, 2007)

definittley the best songs are "The Problem" and "a mendicant"

do yourself a favor and take a listen

SydBarrett420 (June 8, 2007)

Actually found myself digging parts of this. It makes my "to burn" pile. Will have to listen again to see what songs, if any, make my "keepers list."

osloboditelj (June 8, 2007)

To deny the fact that too much interference from the engineer can noticeably change the sound of a record, often for the worse, is to suggest you don't really listen to the sound of a record at all.

imprettystoked (June 8, 2007)

This album is very good, and songs like "the weathermachine" lyrically always get me. I got this on tuesday when it came out and have listend to it non-stop.

Anonymous (June 8, 2007)

What the hell is wrong with SST's mid-80s sound? And, to SST's credit, you're thinking more of the producer known as Spot rather than SST itself. But even Spot had his own brand of charm.......

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