steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
info opinion


"The Garden in the Machine" CD

Audiokio Productions

Genres: rock, emo

Oblivion Rock Music
308 East William
Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Sep 26 - Oct 3 2004

Oblivion is a band that's a bit hard to peg down. On their latest album, The Garden in the Machine, the five piece set out of Ann Arbor seem to do a bit of everything. From straight up rock to quasi-screamo, with a touch of metal lite here and there, the band is all over the map. Throw in a couple of softer, more reflective pieces such as "Ophelia", and "The Language of Dissent" and it's hard to figure out what's going on. Herein lies the problem. Oblivion can't seem to make up their mind as to what they want to do. Throughout their disc it often seems as if they're trying to cover three different genres per song, which is great if you can do it - but better bands have tried and failed.

This album definitely takes on a serious tone, which is slightly refreshing in this day and age of clichés. The band is a tight, skilled ensemble that plays everything well, and singer Tres Crow has a great vocal range that seems underused. Unfortunately, the band's songwriting talents don't match their playing skills - most of the twelve songs on the disc go on for a bridge or two longer than they should; the result is a pretty repetitive album.

The Garden in the Machine is a record with a lot of promise - not so much in the album itself, which even halfway through starts feeling bland and repetitive, but in the band itself. With some better songwriting and a little more polish, Oblivion could be turning out thought-provoking and insightful music. This is definitely a work in progress, however.


Jack White

[Vitals: 12 tracks, distributed by Audiokio Productions, released 2004]