Pomegranates - Everything Is Alive (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Everything Is Alive (2008)


Pomegranates build furiously upon the basic foundation of their 2007 EP, Two Eyes. The result is like the very cover of this album, which is a pretty kaleidoscope-ian burst of color with some solid imagery speckled in. Everything Is Alive is a bit inconsistent, sometimes lingering with a basic, boring indie template, but otherwise offering some satisfying moments.

It's hard to tell who's responsible for the style of singing, but let's guess it based off the order of credits in the liner notes. Some might describe Isaac Karns' androgynous vocals as plaintive, but I just think he needs some more 'umph' behind his voice. If he did, Pomegranates' Smiths/Polyvinyl Rex-esque indie pop romps would instantly be transformed from light background fare to more engaging, confronting material. When Joey Cook chimes in, it's pretty cool; two minutes into "Whom/Who," he begins to shout in a way that strangely (yet pleasantly) seems to reside halfway between 1980s U2-style grandeur and the train shuffle camaraderie of Arcade Fire.

A reservation in the vocal department doesn't completely sap Everything Is Alive of, well, life, though. "Honey Moon Pie" does an admirable job of swelling and crashing, while sporadic twinkles and layers give the album an overall lush, hearty feel. And they don't let these things go overboard, either; Everything Is Alive clocks in at an incredibly modest 32 minutes, yet it never feels rushed or gives a forced sense of urgency.

While falling a bit short of the expectations laid on their homemade EP, Everything Is Alive is a shaky but formidable effort.

Thunder Meadow

The Bellhop