Verse En Coma - Rialto [10 inch] (Cover Artwork)

Verse En Coma

Rialto [10 inch] (2008)

Robotic Empire

Five years after the breakup of City of Caterpillar, the influential band that combined screamo with post-rock, three of the four members teamed up with another guitarist and singer to finally release the debut album, Rialto, by their new band: Verse En Coma.

Though it is true that the five members of Verse En Coma have been in a number of other bands (Pg. 99, Darkest Hour, Ghastly City Sleep, etc.) it is impossible not to make the comparison between City of Caterpillar and Verse En Coma, because of the heavy use of delay, dynamics, and the long song lengths. However, what separates Verse En Coma from all of the other projects that the members have been involved with, past and present, is that this new album is surprisingly poppy. In truth, the pop elements are subtle and probably only become apparent after realizing that for how emotive and distorted Rialto is, the album is not that dark and at times could be considered dancey. The guitar work never seems repetitive and manages to be engaging. The rhythm section tows the line between impressive and tasteful; both the drummer and bassist are extremely talented, but they know when it is best for the song for them to play something simple in order for the song to sound its best. Arguably the least engaging element to this record are the vocals, which contains an effect to make it sound like the vocal tracks were recorded over a walkie-talkie.

The packaging to this album is neat, but kind of a letdown: gatefold packaging of the 10" vinyl and CD (which can only be packaged together) but without a lyric sheet. For such underwhelming packaging, the $15+ price tag that most distros have seems to be a bit pricey for six tracks. Be that as it may, this album is definitely worth checking out, especially before all 1000 copies are sold and end up on eBay at exorbitant prices.

Overall, though I thoroughly enjoy this album, it failed to hit me as hard as some of the other records put out by the members of this band. However, if Verse En Coma, who has yet to play their first show, ever records an LP, I imagine that this EP puts them in position for that record to make them the band in the emotional hardcore scene that kids freak out over for years.