November 3, 2005

CD Review: Index Case - Index Case

Index Case? Are we that far down the list of band names that they had to choose something like Index Case? Sorry, I just don't care for the name, but that's about it. Index Case's self titled debut is an excellent new addition to the new music scene. They are a combination of some nu metal riffing, emo inflected singing, and a lot of energy.

It isn't often that a disk from an unknown act lands on my doorstep and delivers. More often than not, what I get is a generic copy of what is already in abundance. Index Case is an exception. They present an album that blends a variety of what is popular but infuse it with their own sensibilities creating something that is more than the sum of its parts.

It opens with "Listen," it opens simply enough a bass line plays while clean vocals float along, that is before it breaks into full on aggression complete with rough singing and a heavy riff coming in with the driving drums. The next song is "Deserver." The song also mixes in a staccato riff and vocals coming from the back of the throat, it chugs into more clean vocals and open chords for the chorus.

Highlights of the album include both of those initial tracks. Others include "Between Us," which reminds me of Cold with some added heaviness and "The Wounded" which floats along with an ethereal feeling, but it isn't without it's aggressiveness. "Fetish" rounds out the top tracks on the album. Although, I have to say that the album as a whole is strong, demonstrating a variety of structures and styles, yet crafting an identity which says "This is Index Case."

I can honestly say that I was surprised by how good Index Case is. If they can get hooked up on as an opener for some big act, these guys could really start to catch on. This album clearly displays they have what it takes.

They are fronted by Joe Ansley who has a strong ability to sing clean, smooth, with emotion, or turn on a dime and growl with the best of them. It is a balance that seem to understand and use effectively throughout the album. The other big part of their sound is Josh Parker on guitar, he mixes up the openness with clipped riffs, not much with leads, but is a strong rhythm guide to lead the songs instrumentally. They are rounded out by the rhythm section of Nick Borror on bass and Jordan Spence on drums. Both of them solid if unspectacular. That is not meant as a put down, they are as important to the sound as the vocals and guitar.

Bottomline. They have the potential to become players, I hope they get the chance. This album has really been growing on me. Strong vocals, great riffs, interesting song structure, they all add up to make an impressive debut album. They have a mix of styles across the current rock spectrum yet are well on their way to crafting their own identity.



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