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Monty Are I - Break Through the Silence Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 7.25
Musicianship 7.5
Lyrics 7
Production 7
Creativity 5
Lasting Value 5
Reviewer Tilt 5.5
Final Verdict: 63%
Member Ratings
Vocals 9.2
Musicianship 9.03
Lyrics 8.38
Production 9.2
Creativity 8.28
Lasting Value 8.82
Reviewer Tilt 7.38
Average: 86%
Inside AP.net

Monty Are I - Break Through the Silence

Reviewed by: Jeremy Aaron (10/02/09)
Monty Are I - Break Through the Silence
Record Label: Island
Release Date: September 22, 2009

Pretty much everything surrounding Break Through the Silence, the sophomore release from Rhode Island's Monty Are I, is a little confounding. Following in the footsteps of Rx Bandits, the band formerly known as Monty's Fan Club evolved from their ska-punk foundations into a progressive-leaning post-hardcore unit with their 2006 release Wall of People, issued on the now-defunct Stolen Transmission imprint. Wall showed promise, but despite its attempts at inventive arrangements, it was essentially a formulaic rock record at its core and achieved only modest success, which is why the band's promotion to major label Island came as a bit of a surprise.

Then comes the actual sound of the album itself. Monty Are I could have refined the sound of Wall of People and turned out something truly interesting, but instead, seem to have fallen into the pitfall of watering down their music and, in the process, eliminating any creative or redeeming aspects, ultimately resulting in a muddled mess. Traces of their trademark brassy orchestration are present here, but most of the time, particularly the ending of "Kaleidoscope," they seem to be inserted merely as an afterthought, and thus don't really add much to the songs. Further, most of these tracks are straight-ahead, polished atmospheric rock and are virtually indistinguishable from the output of similar bands like Secret and Whisper.

The most striking quality of Break Through the Silence is vocalist Steve Aiello's powerful vocals, which bear strong similarities to Saosin's Cove Reber, especially at the upper reaches of his register, when the voice strains just a bit. His mostly high-pitched delivery fits the musical style well, but the combination has become so commonplace that it's hard to get excited about it anymore, and when it's overly autotuned and robotic effects are applied, as on the opening title track, the results aren't very pretty and border on grating. After twelve tunes that are very similar in terms of melody, a little depth in this department would have been welcome, as well.

Wall of People producer Matt Squire returned to produce Break Through the Silence, accompanied by Linkin Park producer Don Gilmore. The focus this time out seemed to be producing a simpler, heavier sound, placing the driving guitar riffs front-and-center in the mix, the product of which is sometimes disheartening, like the exercise in power chords that is "Hope." Monty have proven themselves to be talented musicians, but seem to have dumbed themselves down here, resulting in a record that's almost uniformly boring (a pass goes to "Sand Riders Doomsday," whose slicing strings and furious guitar work make it the highlight). After Wall of People, it wouldn't have been unreasonable to hope for an imaginative and exciting follow-up, but unfortunately, it ended up being mostly bland and lifeless. Maybe next time.

Recommended If You LikeSaosin's In Search of Solid Ground
The Receiving End of Sirens' Between the Heart and the Synapse
Secret and Whisper's The Great White Whale
Closure in Moscow's First Temple
Ivoryline's There Came a Lion


Track Listing1. Break Through the Silence (3:42)
2. The Stand (3:34)
3. Hope (3:33)
4. One in a Million (2:58)
5. Making Sounds (3:46)
6. Sand Riders Doomsday (3:14)
7. Kaleidoscope (3:45)
8. All of You Tonight (3:42)
9. On the Wire (3:56)
10. Desert (3:53)
11. Mirage (2:52)
12. Convoy of Angels (3:55)
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 71.
09:09 AM on 10/02/09
#2
Jeff_Ryan
easy come and easy go, whatever
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Sand Rider's Doomsday was the song that stood out for me, too. I enjoyed the album but it's nothing I'm going to tell all my friends about.
09:11 AM on 10/02/09
#3
brokenwings
Tear the scene down, start over.
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i agree with most everything. except for the saosin and secret and whisper comparisons...
09:17 AM on 10/02/09
#4
Gin
What'd those animals say to ya?
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I like the first 7 tracks. They are so catchy, my itunes-counter exploded in a few days^^
The album as a whole isnt outstanding, but its very good music in my opinion :)
great band.
09:32 AM on 10/02/09
#5
SteveD
It won't snow where she is going.
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Lol Steve sounds nothing like Cove.

Not a fan of the review, kudos for trying though.

The album is really great, and certainly not boring.
09:46 AM on 10/02/09
#6
sasalukac
giddy up
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I'd personally give their Wall of People release a bit more credit, given the energy and lasting appeal of many of the tracks. That said, the album as a whole wasn't very consistent, and made it fall short of an outstanding release; so in that respect I agree with you. All in all good review, I'll check this out and keep your words in mind.
09:58 AM on 10/02/09
#7
what_ever
every supahero need his theme music
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saw the first RIYL and cringed. will not be listening, haha. I wasn't a big fan of their debut though.
10:07 AM on 10/02/09
#8
ezco25
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63??
ur fucking kidding me this cd is amazing - and has so many never done before things in it

crappy reviewer - plus 7.25 on vocals? the vocals on this record stood out to me like on no other album this year

r u high?
10:15 AM on 10/02/09
#9
ReadyForAction
life in the greenhouse effect
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63??
ur fucking kidding me this cd is amazing - and has so many never done before things in it

crappy reviewer - plus 7.25 on vocals? the vocals on this record stood out to me like on no other album this year

r u high?
lol I like your logic
10:22 AM on 10/02/09
Jeremy Aaron
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63??
ur fucking kidding me this cd is amazing - and has so many never done before things in it

crappy reviewer - plus 7.25 on vocals? the vocals on this record stood out to me like on no other album this year

r u high?
I don't use drugs. Good music makes me high. Since I was listening to this particular CD when writing the review, I was not high.

Also, there isn't anything "never done before" here, because this very band did them before, and executed it better, on their last album.
10:25 AM on 10/02/09
andthetruthwill
You keep company with wolves.
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The first part of this album has songs that seem to stand out, then it kind of faded and the songs got weird as it progressed, i thought upon first listen.

And they have no relation in sound to Secret and Whisper. That's kind of out of the ballpark.The sounds here are a lot of loud soft dynamics fitted for radio. I would say they are like There for Tomorrow, but not as good or emotional.
10:26 AM on 10/02/09
ezco25
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I don't use drugs. Good music makes me high. Since I was listening to this particular CD when writing the review, I was not high.
haha its funny how you think youre funny...

but come on - really? a 63 - deff not

either you are the shittiest reviewer to walk the land OR monty has done something to piss you off?
10:34 AM on 10/02/09
denissuxx
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I listened to three songs off this earlier.. it wasn't bad, but nothing made me want to listen to more... and I would rather listen to Dog Problems.

Will give it another chance probably.
10:35 AM on 10/02/09
Merch_Mike
Faber Drive / merch guy
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I loved their previous album. I can't get into this one at all so far.
10:45 AM on 10/02/09
Jeremy Aaron
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haha its funny how you think youre funny...

but come on - really? a 63 - deff not

either you are the shittiest reviewer to walk the land OR monty has done something to piss you off?
Both, obviously. I'm, of course, the shittiest reviewer in the world. Everyone knows that. Also, my slutty ex-girlfriend fucked one of the band members. I was pissed, so this is my way of getting even.

Seriously, though, this album isn't awful, but this band seems capable of much better, but appear to be satisfied going by the numbers.
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