steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Quiet After Nine

"Arrangements" CD


Genres: alternative rock, indie rock, emo

May 24 - 30 2004

Quiet After Nine is the type of band that wins high school Battle of the Bands competitions. Their youthful, angsty "alternative rock" style is the stuff of muscular yet sensitive cool kids with trophy girlfriends. Chances are, the three guys behind Quiet After Nine are (or were) pretty popular in college, and now that they've got their own band [and their own debut album!], they probably have a decent fanbase and a respectable number of subscribers for their online email update list. Their music is a technically sound, though particularly unoriginal, brand of emo-tinged indie rock, characterized by somewhat whiny [and occasionally irritating] singing and tight but uninteresting guitar playing.

Arrangements is their first dip into the full-length album department, and as is often the case with new bands, it needs some work. Though Quiet After Nine fancy themselves to be in the same league as Guided By Voices and No Knife, this disc is far from comparable to those acts. Although they share a bit of their melodic angularity with No Knife, their compositions aren't nearly as immediately listenable or atmospherically urgent. The closest attempt is the opener, "Make This Happen," which boasts a good guitar part but suffers from a lack of structural distinction and truly memorable pop hooks. In order for a song such as this to be truly successful, Quiet After Nine needs to make the composition tighter - the guitars need to be less fuzzy, and more attention should be paid to accentuating the chords with relation to the singing. A sharper overall sound would be recommended. "Decorate Themselves The Same" is a step in the right direction; its use of a jagged, infectious guitarline is really successful, but the melody isn't particularly memorable. Some of the band's less aggressive songs, like "Unconvinced and Independent" and "Fabrication", also work as interludes to the disc's more fiery moments, but are overall a bit inconsequential.

Quiet After Nine is a young band, and rookie mistakes are far from unexpected on Arrangements. Keep an eye on this band; their future looks bright - if they can tighten up their compositions and do away with needless "filler," they could really have something.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 10 tracks, distributed by the band, released 2003]