Flight Case for Sushi - The Frequency of Hydrogen
Record Label: None
Release Date: May 4, 2009
Flight Case for Sushi. It’s definitely a unique band name and thankfully Dax McCall (vocals), Blair Gilley (guitar), Mikey Ferrara (drums), and Ty Pritchard (bass) have crafted an equally unique debut to back it up. The Frequency of Hydrogen is a record that combines elements of pop-punk, rock, alternative, grunge, and other quirks from separate genres into a surprisingly coherent piece. The songs flow together well, and while every track is not a success story, the album is enjoyable overall.
“We are the Lonely” starts things off with a good opening riff followed by catchy verses, and even though the chorus falls a little flat, the excellent construction of the bridge makes up for it. The song, and the record for that matter, feature good vocals and lyrics with lines like “This house was filled with memories/and your bed has made enemies.” “In Closing” is a good follow-up with palm muted guitars and a memorable chorus. One of the better tracks on the record is “This is a Fire” which channels some of the Offspring’s “You’re Gonna Go Far Kid” in it. The pacing is faster and the drums are impressive as is the addition of choral group style gang vocals in the bridge. It’s an energetic cut that also features a good synthesizer backing. Next up is “Panic Mode,” a song that opens with strings and takes on more of a dance club feel in the chorus.
“The Ascension (Interlude)” is a short instrumental introduction with an organ that skillfully leads into “It Was a Setup.” “Setup” has a slower opening but it builds up by the chorus and even more so in the aggressive transition to the bridge. “Another Day in Paradise” isn’t a cover of the Phil Collins’ song of the same name but instead it is another fast number that kicks up the energy after the trumpet opening. It has a bit of an Anberlin feel to it a la “Feel Good Drag,” but isn’t a copycat. The song is unique in its excellent use of gang vocals in the bridge and its closing with a mandolin, piano, and strings. It’s certainly a catchy number especially as McCall sings “My hand, yours in mine, everything will be fine.”
“Forget Everything You Love” opens with acoustic strumming that stops and starts, and soon branches into impressive bass work in the verses and an excellent bridge. This song has similarities to modern Green Day songs like “Peacemaker.” Next in line is “Right Where You Need to Be” which is a forgettable track overall, but the verses are good. “By the Time I Hit the Border” has excellent melodies in the verses backed up by the palm muted guitars and a highly catchy chorus. “Hurts to See You Shake” is a song with palpable emotions as McCall sings “I want you to shake like your body’s freezing” before he goes into the poppy chorus that provides good dancing beats. The opening riff sounds a bit similar to the album’s lead-off track, though.
“Thieves, Crooks, and Politicians” is an attack on hypocrisy as McCall sarcastically sings about people in positions of power: “don’t they treat you good/like a schoolboy should.” The opening is attention grabbing, the verses are catchy, the bass is quality, and Gilley provides another excellent guitar solo in the bridge. This song harbors some similarities to Punchline’s material. Closing the record is “Silence,” a song that opens with acoustic guitar soon followed by excellent melodies and vocals throughout. It is slow to start out but it builds up into an epic-sounding second chorus before fading out gracefully with strings, a mandolin, piano, and still other arrangements. Finally, on my record, there was a bonus song entitled “Picture Perfect,” that was quite catchy and carried the energy of a summertime anthem, featuring more excellent sing-along gang vocals in the bridge.
Flight Case for Sushi are a band with genuine talent and potential to find much success, and The Frequency of Hydrogen is a great step in the right direction. It is a strong debut effort and each song has at least one moment that is sure to impress listeners. The only real problem with this record is that some songs lack strong enough hooks to call listeners back to hear them replayed. Still, though, this record is a worthy addition to any music lover’s collection and I am legitimately interested in what Flight Case for Sushi do next.