The Poison Arrows - First Class, and Forever
Record Label: File Thirteen
Release Date: May 12th, 2009
The Poison Arrows. With a name like that, you don't feel well. Poison? Not a good substance. Arrows? Dangerous. The? An article. So at first listen I had no idea what to expect. Honestly, I wasn't feeling this album at all -- I couldn't figure out how this band could keep writing songs that could appeal to anyone. It was beyond me. After a few more listens and turning up the volume, I found that this album is actually quite good. The droning of the bass on "Twenty Percent Brighter" is what got me. I felt as if I should be planning a bank robbery when listening to this song, a very elaborate and maintained robbery, which are two words to explain this album.
Strong bass lines completely set the trail for the song, while the drums follow. The guitar comes in and out of songs, but when it's involved, you won't notice it until the vocals are gone, which are my only problems with this album. The vocals are basically unheard because there's too much going on between drums and bass. I've never heard an album that had those two instruments dominate everything else (other than Death From Above 1979, but that's understood). The album does really have it's tone in line. It's melancholy with a little bit of jam, and this tone is maintained throughout the entire album. It's consistent, which could be considered a bad thing or a good thing, depending on the mood of the listener.
"Peruvian Mountain Fight" might be a song I'd consider putting on a movie soundtrack. It's as badass as Han Solo in the Cantina. The song is so strong that I want to describe it as arrogant, but that's not positive. It's definitely my favorite off the album, which is a good thing because if clocks in at 6:18. The album closes with a great ending, just as it began. The last notes heard mirror the first notes heard. The thing though is, what is the last track? "Meet the Eyes" or "Ideal Omens"? "Meet the Eyes" ends at 8:40 but continues for about two minutes as "Ideal Omens" starts after that, only lasting for barely a minute. Therefore, it's understood to be a secret/hidden track but it's listed on the tracklisting, so I really don't know. Overall, the album is a grower. With jazzy drum beats and powerful bass, it's definitely an interesting listen. The Poison Arrows can be onto something here, and I'll be listening.