Neurosonic – Drama Queen

Band: Neurosonic
Album: Drama Queen
Genre: Rock/Synth Rock
Label: Bodog Music

1. So Many People
2. Are Solar
3. I Will Always Be Your Fool
4. Me Myself and I
5. Crazy Sheila
6. Until I Die
7. Fearless
8. Boneheads
9. Frankenstein
10. So Now You Know
11. For The Boy

They say that good things never last forever and I think that applies perfectly to the album I’m about to review. A few weeks ago Bodog Music sent UTG a package filled with albums from the bands that had appeared on their Battle Of The Bands show and most of them have been great. So great in fact that I’ve been anxiously awaiting the chance to review the next one, that is, until I heard Drama Queen, the dark synth laced rock album from Neurosonic. It seems the train of great sound has come to a screeching halt as this band seems to have created an album void of originality and instead delivered a poor replica of bands like mid 90’s rockers Orgy mashed up with 311 style vocals. I know it sounds appealing, but after a lot of time and discussion, I have to warn you, this is one bumpy ride.

Drama Queen begins with the lead single, “So Many People,” which starts strong with chugging guitars and a catchy synth overlay, but when vocalist Jason Darr comes in, it all goes downhill. The song may sound liek the angsty rock anthem teens feed for, but by looking at the lyrics I realized it’s all about Ashlee Simpson’s lip syncing incident on SNL and no, I’m not kidding. It’s a near 3 minute bash on Simpson and her supposed lack of talent. If this is Darr at his best, I cringe to think of what else is coming my way. “I Will Always Be your Fool,” the album’s third track keeps up the solid musicianship and even takes a few steps away from synth rock to reference 311 [a band Darr’s vocals will constantly bring to mind]. It’s a bit softer and laid back until the chorus begins to come in and Darr’s vocals begin to wail about unrequited love and then you’re hooked by the simple lyrics and catchy beat. This is a true bright spot on a the album. The next track however, is an out of place acoustic jam entitled, “Me, Myself, and I,” and seems like nothing more than straight filler with the band making subtle references to Tantric. The album’s latest single, “Until I Die,” sneaks in at track six and shows promise of the band pulling off a great rock anthem. It starts strong with rocking guitars, but once the chorus hits, you just lose interest as Darr’s lyrics lack the depth and emotion that really seals a true rock hit. However, the song is a valiant effort nonetheless and the most stand out of all the tracks on the album. On, “Frankenstein,” the band choose a more relaxed beat with a beautiful synth line backing the track while Darr attempts to stretch his vocal to arena heights, however, it just feels forced. After all this synth, you’d think the album may have some epic electronic fed closer, but Neurosonic choose instead to close with the acosutic lead, “For The Boy,” which shows promise of a good change for the band. Perhaps next time around they should keep the acoustic around a bit more often.

Neurosonic’s Drama Queen is nothing more than a collection of rock cliche’s poorly put together. The flow of the album is very awkward and Darr’s lyricism falls flat, especially when he’s trying to be deep [“I’m so bitter, I can taste it”]. However, taken from a shear music aspect, the album has great riffs, beats, and the synth lines are always quite catchy. Unfortunately, we have to look at this album as a whole and the lack of cohesiveness and the ability to do anything that really reaches through the speakers and catches your attention really over shadows the talent of the musicians. Maybe with a little work Neurosonic will find some solid footing, but until then, I’d think more than twice before picking this one up.

*Written By: James Shotwell*
GRADE: 2.5/10

James Shotwell
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