Close Your Eyes EP

Written by: TL on 22/10/2009 14:46:32

When I first encountered the Minnesota rockers from Quietdrive, their second album "Deliverance" provided me with a much needed reinstatement of faith in American radio-rock. After having been plagued with one one-hit wonder after another, and tonnes of generic, failed attempts at recreating the glory of the 90's post-grunge trends, QD came along with a sound that often closed in on the magic of Third Eye Blind, packed in an album with at least a small handful of memorable songs. Needless to say, it didn't take me long to sign up when their new EP "Close Your Eyes" suddenly came our way.

However, after giving it a few spins, I'm thinking that I should've maybe hesitated. There's really only one simple way to say this: Quietdrive used to have it, and now, they've pretty much lost it. The reason this band ever held any appeal over me, was that they actually managed to pull off that 90's vibe without sounding dated or like a copy, so you can probably only try in vain to imagine my dismay when I found that the first four songs out of the seven on this EP could've easily been written for any of the last two albums by The Audition - A band I get more and more annoyed with every time I hear or see them.

Instead of dynamic, mid-tempo, anthemic tracks with super-sticky choruses and thick guitar riffs, what we're now treated with is generic, light-weight, up-beat pop-punk. The kind of which is already played by a million billion faceless upstarts all over God's own country, and which no-one who really cares about music wants to listen to. And it's a only a small comfort that track five, "Lottery" seems to return somewhat to the type of stuff I long for, because its lyrics are pretty retarded if you ask me, and that makes it feel kind of half-assed. The same goes for the typical echoing ballad that is "Into The Ocean". It's not too cheesy to be believable, yet it's also not at all touching enough to make a memory. The ending "What A Life" does as "Lottery", showcasing a few of the good elements again, but it's hampered by another half-assed chorus and an overly poppy piano. As for the children's choir that makes a brief appearance, it could've been a good idea in a good song, but on this EP it just feels like another pair of socks on a Christmas Eve where you've only gotten soft gifts.

In all fairness though, if you were new to Quietdrive, you'd probably not think that "Close Your Eyes EP" is all that terrible. To the band's credit, they've managed to avoid adopting the annoying faux-rockstar attitude that plagues plenty of bands in the business (Hello Danny Stevens, I'm looking at you), and they've avoided creating any equally annoying tracks. However, they've also more or less avoided writing anything moving or memorable for this EP, and hence, they're going to have to accept that it only deserves to be stuck with a:

Download: Lottery, Jessica, What A Life
For The Fans Of: The Audition, The All-American Rejects, Third Eye Blind
Listen: myspace.com/quietdrive

Release Date 14.10.2009

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