Transition to a New Dream

CD Cover Evan Symons
Step and a Half

Review by Darren Kerr

Methinks thou wearests too many hats, Evan Symons: songwriter, singer, guitarist, keyboardist, clarinetist, drum programmer, man about town. You have talent, don't get me wrong. On the best song on this CD, "The Way Things Are," you weave a cool, hummable melody, then lay down a guitar solo that is somewhere between Dean Ween and Steely Dan.

I can also dig you getting all techno and foreboding on "Brain Interface," but the combination of that tinny Casio verse line and your loungy vocal see-sawing is so irritating that my girlfriend threatened to kill me if I ever play it again. Is that what you were trying to achieve? Do you want to send all the girlfriends of Vancouver into a homicidal frenzy of Biblical proportion?

And how did you come up with the idea of the breaking glass percussion sounds in "Tied (One More Day)"? They sound great, kinda like Bonehead Night at the Turf Hotel. Is that where those sounds came from? Did you actually take some expensive piece of recording equipment into the Turf? If so, you are a far braver man than I.

Really, your proggie folk does contain some good ideas: a guitar part here, a subtle chord change there. Yet it sounds like you are trying to make the hooks too quirky, thus undermining the melodies. Still, even Sebadoh's Lou Barlow and GBV's Robert Pollard tend to fall into that same trap every now and then.

Artist Contact Info: Box 292, 3495 Cambie St., Vancouver, B.C., Canada, V5Z 4R3,

First published in Drop-D Magazine on May 18, 1998

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