The Goodwill - That Was A Moment (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

The Goodwill

That Was A Moment (2003)

Negative Progression

I can't wait for the backlash, oh I can't wait brothrs and sistrs, for it's almost here, it has to be, a backlash that if only for a moment makes music honest, tough, dangerous…anything that's different from the overproduced bile in mainstream music today. Am I wrong in claiming that something is not right with today's music? Let's look at the current trends; metal cut the tempo and hired a stylist, thugz became huggably cute, and punk is a slew of commercial jingles with wimpy singers. It's become increasingly harder to tell a Simple Plan video from a Gap commercial, or a New Found Glory clip from a Blink-182 outtake. This has bred a generation of kids who think Puddle of Mudd is heavy rock, that pintsized Ja Rule is tough, and Good Charlotte is rebellious punk rock. No wonder the kids today are soft, the mainstream is only offering them one-calorie rock and roll without ever suggesting music that will kick your teeth in, and it breaks my heart to hear new acts that sound just as prim and proper as the previous band of buffed and polished pretty boys. However, when the underground imitates the mainstream it signals for a change to happen, waking the people from their slumber and making them proclaim, "now this is good!"

Unfortunately, Long Island's The Goodwill are just another carbon copy of truly wimpy musicians who think people honestly care about melodramatic tales of relationship issues, which apparently this band has a lot of, moving from one mid-tempo song to the other without changing the subject matter once. Surely this latest record of prissy rock and roll will add to my woes, but it could possibly bring us all closer to the end of Nickelodeon-safe punk (forever the optimist).

The core of this band (guitarists Daniel Sanchez and Travis Johnides, bassist Josh Moskoviz, and drummer Greg Oecshlin) have their finest moment during the first twenty-seven seconds of "Let it Go", with drums flying while pick-scrapes follow dropping into the "punk intro" but then singer Brian Barbuto enters with a feeble tenor which immediately neutralizes all the energy in the music. Worst of all, Barbuto's voice is one that never stops singing (on any of the songs), so much in fact, melody fails to be a part of the Goodwill formula, aimlessly delivering lyrics such as, "Let me hide between the sheets/You used to cover up my scars/That I have been dealt with by girls/That never cared like you." What little energy is left on this record seems to break down in the rhythm section after the first three songs, leaving the rest of the album feeling far too comfortable without any sense of the urgency that gives music life. And when the record is supposed to reach its emotional peak during the final song "Broken", the "do-do-do" chorus is excruciatingly limp and lasts over a minute long, leaving me annoyed rather than moved.

Music aside, the booklet alone is as pretentious and forced as art gets, telling the tale of boy and girl together in bliss on the cover until he is alone on the back cover, holding his face in his hand, a fraction of the man he was with her, supposedly novel and poetic. This is the very thing that is making kids today soft for there is no adventure in bickering relationships and there is no excitement in art so obvious that it's blinding. Song titles such as "Forgotten Feeling", "Deception", "Lying Alone", and "Broken" are just a few examples of how planned out and superficial this music is. My suggestion is to protect your ears and get comfortable, for The Goodwill's latest record "That Was a Moment" is an extremely long 38 minutes of truly forgettable music.