Close Talker - So Am I (Cover Artwork)

Close Talker

So Am I (2013)

Stay Sweet Records

Close Talker's So Am I is their first LP release, which dropped last summer in June of 2013. The LP shows progression, and is essentially a more polished version of their demo. One of the defining characteristics of Close Talker is brazen, yet also emo-esque lyrics coupled with aggressive music. The LP still maintains these qualities, but shows musical and lyrical maturity.

The members of Close Talker have strong backgrounds in music, and their writing ability shows it. Lyrically, Close Talker could be viewed as very appealing or very unappealing because of their harsh lyrics, which are reinforced by their intense guitar and drums. So Am I kicks off with "Exact Change" and "Tales of Distrust and Cynicism", songs about disdain, mostly for the self. Lyrically, the album addresses that tumultuous point of life when you struggle with knowing past mistakes, but are unwilling or unsure of how to move forward in a positive manner; That point when you realize you are becoming stubborn in your ways, and it's affecting your relationships with other people. Although the fashion in which these lyrics are presented may be considered selfish, you can't help but be attracted to them for their admission of fault, which is so human. It can't be said there aren't elements of emotion within the album.

In the song titled "Can‘t Stand Your Laugh", the band in less than two minutes sums up and kills relationship life, bringing to light the harsh reality of modern dating in a way that other bands have tried to capture, but definitely haven't been so on-point with in such a short song."End of the Week" is a song about how rough life can be, until you see that one person, and that knot in your stomach undoes, at least for a time. The sensual nature of this song has some old school ties with T.Rex. The content of this song is almost the same as Marc Bolan would've written- A rockin' song about ephemeral emotions. It's really on a par with "Bang a Gong." Thematically, this album delves into truths which can sometimes turn ugly, such as self loathing and the fact that people change.

Musically, the album's tracks are a stark difference from other bands of the same genre which stay close to either emo or punk both musically and lyrically. Close Talker is an awesome mixture of the two. "Icarus II" is where you can see the peppered style influence of The Black Powder Fuzzbox, which singer/guitarist Cory Chubb and drummer Steven Birch were in years ago. This song utilizes celestial imagery with romantic themes. Although the track order seems well thought out, the ending could be a little stronger. It would've been nice to see the album send off as intensely as it started out. Overall, the album has its real high points in the beginning and middle.

Ultimately, the lyrics realize the follies of human behavior, the musical body reacts in a vehement manner, and here and there are moments of ephemeral pleasure from actions without thought and surrealistic dream visions. The album is almost asking "now what?", and that is exactly what I am wondering about Close Talker's next release.