Mineral - The Power of Failing
Record Label: Crank!
Release Date: January 28, 1997
Mineral were basically the epitome of the "emo-indie" genre. Their music features powerful yet out-of-tune vocals, schizophrenic guitars, hard hitting drums, and heavy bass. With their 1997 debut, The Power Of Failing, they nearly perfected the genre.
Vocalist Chris Simpson has a knack for creating deep, emotional lyrics and then delivering them in the best way possible. This is evident in the opener, "Five, Eight, & Ten." As soon as this song starts you know what to expect from the album. Simpson delivers personal lyrics such as "Now I wonder if I can even move or breathe, without disappointing someone" in a near perfect manner, as he allows the listener to see into his mind and what he is thinking. His vocals are relatively tame in this song, but later in the album they truly explode and Simpson shows what he can really do.
"Slower" is easily the best track on the album, and the best of Mineral's career. It starts out with a slow riff and a steady drum beat, and then quickly after, Simpson begins to serenade you with his spectacular lyrics and vocal abilities. The song really picks up when the guitars and drumming start to go berserk, Simpson raises the volume and intensity of his vocals. The underlying bass gives "Slower" so much more depth, and makes it an all around "fuller" song, for lack of a better term. The most powerful part of the song is about halfway through, when Simpson exclaims "But people like you and me never get that peace / It comes from denying that everything is so screwed up / It's so screwed up!" The way Simpson yells "It's so screwed up!" showcases what he is really trying to convey with Mineral's music, about how everything about it is passionate and emotional. The vocals stop with about two minutes left in the song, but it keeps going strong as the insane guitars lead it to the beautiful end.
"80-37" is one of the "happier" songs on the album, with it's gleeful vocals and simple guitars. It's quickly followed by the somber "If I Could," which is a six minute ballad that shows true passion throughout. The Power Of Failing has several long songs, the longest being "Silver," clocking in just short of seven minutes, and there are only three songs on the ten track LP that are under four minutes. This is an excellent thing, because these tracks need to be enjoyed for as long as possible.
There are so many good qualities about Mineral. Everything that they did with The Power Of Failing was done correctly, and it packs a pretty powerful punch. They will forever be remembered, especially because of this landmark of an album.