Welcome to the musical meandering insights of Aaron Joy. Here you'll find 600 reviews of CDs & DVDs of rock & metal in all its variations, mainstream & indie. What they all share is that the album or band is unique in some way & not every submission was reviewed. Please share these reviews or link to them if you like what you read. Reviews are no longer being posted here but feel free to e-mail Aaron & post comments. (Formerly the Roman Midnight Music Blog)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Violence ~ The Violence (aka debut) (EP) (live)


(Click on heading to visit official website.)
Style: punk, experimental, funk, hard rock

Label: self-released
Year: 2008
Home: Brooklyn, New York

Members: Gia Jordan ~ vocals/guitar/trumpet/piano/flute/harmonica/percussion
Colman Ramner ~ drums/guitar
Soul Product ~ bass

This punk trio has been growing & developing musically on the New York music scene since 2008. Born out of the solo efforts of trumpet player turned guitarist-songwriter-singer Gia Jordan The Violence expanded into a drum/guitar duo before finding a final form as trio of drum/guitar/funk bass. But, those who have seen the band live & then listened to their studio recordings, all available via their myspace, will find a musical gap between the two. There's the funky free jam punk live band & then there's the very different avant-garde experimental studio tracks featuring Gia alone, who is a constant outpouring of creativity regularly adding to her often angst-ridden repertoire that's as gritty as the streets it was born from. Though they describe themselves as "revolutionary indie robot rock" the Violence might be indie but they're certainly not robotic, in any sense of the word. Their music is the antithesis of expectations & incredibly organic, particularly on stage. "Blood Makes The Grass Grow" is probably the first song one gravitates to & it could, in many ways, be the central philosophy of Gia & co. Recorded live on stage, "fight, fight, what makes the grass grow" comes blaring out over a rather non-melodic Sex Pistols-esque guitar/bass rhythm that sounds like music made for a stomping. Like many of the songs the lyrics are largely cryptic relying on basic anger & confrontation rather than an elaborate poetic philosophical treatise or obscure social references. & that's pretty much the philosophy of the Violence - angry & confrontational. Rebellion largely driven by Gia's busy pen. A bass solo over Gia's cries of "tick, tick, tick, tick, boom, boom" in time with the drum provides a nice break in the music allowing an otherwise couple minute song of a heavily repeated riff to keep the energy going for an unexpected five minutes which the crowd responds to joyously. It would be great to hear a stong studio recording of this versus the almost bootleg quality of the concert. "Hey You (Over There)" is also shared in a live version that brings together funk bass by Soul Product, drums & soulful trumpet in an extended jam before breaking into an atonal rolling riff that provides a foundation for Gia to tirade over as she does so well. "I'm Not Afraid Of Anything" follows in a similiar live aggressive vein though is probably the most pop oriented song both lyrically & musically even with its atonal guitar solo by Gia. "Get Angry (At Me)" shows the experimental side of the Violence, being an acoustic studio outing featuring only Gia & her trademark multiple echoing vocal layers that can't be reproduced on stage against the standard simple, aggressive & sloppy rhythm. Though the lyrics are just as mad as any other song the energy is more experimental & comes off far more softer & tender than the live band ever will. It's so deceptively soft & tender that its shocking to hear it end with "all I want to see is blood coming from your head."


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