May 23, 2005

The Stella Link "mystic jaguar...attack!

Mixing post-rock with math-rock and a hint of metal, The Stella Link's debut album, Mystic Jaguar...Attack! isn't quite as silly as the band name might lead you to believe. Mixing up a sound that's epic in style and overwhelmingly instrumental (there are vocals but they're dwarfed by the loud guitars), The Stella Link seem to prefer making grand musical statements. Sometimes what they create sounds really good and original, such as the great "Fog Machine," "Ice Machine" and "Apogee," but at other times, what they do sounds a bit derivative and a little boring. They've got some good ideas, actually, even if haven't managed to accomplish all of them. Occasionally, the drumming seems to be a little high in the mix--a common complaint of most math/art/indie-rock--and if it were pushed back into the mix, allowing the melodies to stand out (such as on "Ice Machine"), the music might be a bit more rewarding. And, truth be told, the singing could be eliminated, and it really wouldn't be missed. If they work on these problems, then it's safe to say The Stella Link could produce something rather distinctive and interesting.

--Joseph Kyle

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