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 William Academy

"Five Fight Songs" CDEP

Ground Control Records / Sign Language Records

Genres: indie rock, alternative rock, synth-pop

Ground Control 
834 Park Place
Suite 3A
Brooklyn, NY 11216

May 10 - 16 2004

Is this the new face of synth-pop?  I'll be honest - I sure hope not.  The William Academy's Five Fight Songs EP isn't necessarily a bad release - in fact, its fast-paced, synth-infused rock sound can be quite exhilarating - but the band's melodic sensibility is far from impressive, and lots of this gets monotonous.

"Erase Me" and "What I Want" are good examples of the worse side of this disc.  Their hooks are unvaried and tiresome, and the high-energy tempo gets somewhat bland as the song progresses.  There are also, however, some good Fight Songs on this EP.  "Northern Boys" is an inspired, memorable alterna-rock-cum-synth-pop offering, and "Let's Pretend (Let's Forget)" boasts an extremely infectious chorus.

Don't throw away your Human League collection yet; The William Academy still have a lot of work to do if they're looking to take over the modern synth-pop scene.  But keep an eye out for these folks - in a few years, they could really have something.  At this point, they are about as promising as an obscure, NYC-based indie rock band can get - and, believe me, that's a compliment.


Fun Fact: I counted two instances on this record where you could hear Microsoft Windows sounds behind the music.  Two different songs, two different sounds.  I could be wrong, and they could actually be part of the music, but it seems to me that The William Academy may want to do away with this type of extraneous audio as it sounds kind of silly. 

Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 5 tracks, distributed by the band, released 2003]