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Christian Music - Reviews, News, Interviews

Intermission to the Moon

  • reviewed by Russ Breimeier Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2007 1 Nov
Intermission to the Moon
Sounds like … the sort of synth-laden indie rock that Falling Up has gradually developed, with some similarities to Mae, Jonezetta, Shiny Toy Guns, The Send, and Anberlin.At a glance … A Dream Too Late's debut is a good start, but there's not enough to their bright indie rock or vaguely positive lyrics to set them apart as more than a warm-up to similar, better acts.Track Listing14th & Knott
Do You Believe? (In Ghosts)
Intermission to the Moon
The Life
City Park
Be Honest
Can I Start New?
A Night Polaris

Who would have guessed that in just three years after their debut, Falling Up would already be spawning spin-offs? First it was guitarist Joe Kisselburgh striking out on his own to start The Send. Now comes A Dream Too Late, a new trio from Albany, Oregon (near Portland), whose association with Falling Up led to collaborative songwriting with frontman Jessy Ribordy, opening slots on tours with Falling Up and The Send, and ultimately the attention of Tooth & Nail Records.

Their name stems from the misconception that it's too late for grace or change. And if that seems confusing, good luck figuring out the meaning behind the title of the band's debut—Intermission to the Moon—it never appears in the song of the same title, which is about responding to cultural coldness with love. Most of the album is less cryptic, though still vaguely positive, whether decrying materialism ("Trendsetter") and hurtful relationships ("Be Honest"), pursuing dreams ("14th & Knott"), or clinging to hope ("Daylight"). But Christian themes are still clearly discernible in tracks like "City Parks" ("You're the owner, but these times are taking over my heart") and "The Life" ("I want to change from the inside out/I'll give you the life, give you the life I live").

Whether the lyrics seem clear, poetic, or vague, the overall sound feels played out. There's no denying the quality of the super-melodic indie rock style, blending punchy guitars (the hefty opening of "City Park" resembles Pumpkins grunge) and retro synths (the very '80s "Can I Start New?"), yet it all too quickly becomes rote. The music merely keeps pace with the band's peers, but never develops into something truly distinctive. With bands like Jonezetta, Anberlin, Mae, and, yes, even Falling Up out there, there's simply not enough here to get too excited about. Intermission amounts to a good start, but it remains to be seen whether A Dream Too Late will develop into something greater than "the warm-up act."

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