Trial Kennedy – New Manic Art


Artist

Album

New Manic Art

Label

Gotham Records/Sony BMG

Year

2008

Genre

For Fans Of

Horsell Common, Gyroscope, Kisschasey

Summary

Natural progression is overrated

Rating

83 / 100

So
most people would know Trial Kennedy as that band that
constantly supported well known acts like Gyroscope and Horsell Common,
and even if you were silly enough to forget their name I’m pretty
sure New Manic Art will leave an impression of all sorts. With the backing
of a major record label (Gotham Records through Sony BMG), TK, have
brought about there first full length album, produced by their ‘dream
producer’ Atlanta- based Nick DiDia (RATM, STP, Audioslave and Powderfinger)
and I can safely say that signs of selling out to the overseas markets
are not evident….well not yet anyway.    

I
should start by saying New Manic Art, well, it’s different. But different
good. Darn good.  

So
I began listening to the latest album, looking forward to something
like TK’s last EP Picture Frame, but was a little surprised to discover
the boys had progressed onto more melodic and slow starting tunes. ‘Oh….’
But I soldiered on nevertheless.   

The
album opens up with ‘Sunday Morning’, a brilliant opener,
which has everything going for it, its upbeat and punchy with slight
punk undertones with its ‘Hey! Hey!’ business. The next track Neighbours is written with the same passion and shows fantastic
chord progression and vocal work from Tim Morrison. Track 4 ‘Colour
Day Tours’,
the current single for TK, is defiantly worth a mention
here. Written for Mark Stewart (Horsell Common Singer/Guitarist) to
cheer him up whilst on tour away from his partner and kid. The song
is simple yet beautiful and slows down the pace of the album. Proven
with its current assault on radio air time I think this is the song
that will entice a fresh new audience for TK.  

NMA
continues on with a laid back, slow approach with melodies and hooks
aplenty and gives Morrison a chance to get more close-to-home with the
lyrics. This is evident in ‘Sweet Ally Rose’.
‘Sweet Ally Rose’
is a track that is different from anything
you would expect from TK, from the slow acoustic approach to the range
of instruments and percussion used. I personally wanted to like the
track I really did but I just couldn’t. I couldn’t grasp the slowness
and leisurely build up to the chorus. But that’s me.  

The
highlights for me on this album would be tracks nine and ten ‘Eldorado’
and ‘War King’. These songs were instant toe –tappers.
They have everything from distortion to inspiring vocals and impressive
beats. These themes should have been more evident on NMA for that is
the TK that we love but alas no. TK have decided to go with a more polished
sound, more radio friendly, but I guess this is all apart of Trial Kennedy’s
natural progression in taking over the rock scene in Oz. 

Conclusion

Pretty
good work from the Trial Kennedy boys, musically they are evolving,
which is going to attract a new crowd. For diehard Trial
Kennedy fans they are either going to embrace the changing style
and go with it or not go with it at all. I really enjoyed the album
and I say give it a go, it’s bound to grow on you.

Tracklisting

  1. Sunday Warning
  2. Neighbours
  3. Hollowood
  4. Colour Day Tours
  5. Sun Eyes
  6. New Manic Art
  7. Sweet Ally Rose
  8. The Great Escape
  9. Eldorado
  10. War K

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