Rolo Tomassi


Written by: TL on 25/10/2008 18:06:29

Being my usual superficial self, I lifted the name of Rolo Tomassi out of some magazine for few other reasons than the commodity of it, and seeing that they are fronted by the only 17-year old Eva Spence, I quite frankly expected them to be a half-assed attempt at emo or poppunk. Thankfully, my preconceptions were thwarted once again, and I admit to having been totally unprepared for the buckshot of bizarro synthcore the band has fired off in form of their debut full length "Hysterics".

First thing to understand about Rolo Tomassi is that they are weird. They are very very weird. It says a lot when they go from sounding like an Amiga game score, over resembling background music for an episode of Scooby-Doo, to being perfect as the soundtrack of a Kubrick movie - Full Metal Space Odyssey? - filling in chaotic breakdowns with menacing screams for transitions - still coming from the teen girl. The album swings back and forth between such HORSE The Band-ish insanity and jazzy atmospheric parts reminding you of The Mars Volta and offers precious little to hold on to in means of traditional harmonies or song structures. Repetition seems to be an unknown word to Rolo Tomassi, and while skeptics may question whether they're merely trying to be strange for the sake of it, "Hysterics" still offer more than its share of moments that are oddly fascinating. Take for instance the almost abysmal mood of opener "Oh, Hello Ghost" or the breakdown of "Abraxas", both leaving subtle but powerful traces in your mind.

In the name of objectivity however, it must be said that it really would serve the band to structure their music a bit more, making it seem more coherent and approachable to their listeners. There seems to be plenty of room to do so in between this band and the ordinary, so there's no need to worry about being called sell-outs. After all, Rolo Tomassi would have to change a lot in order to ever sound normal. For now, their music is best enjoyed when you're either in the mood for something that doesn't make any obvious kind of sense, or going to see the band live under the influence of your favourite substance - The latter of which I'm sure would be easily as trippy, intense and awesome as watching HORSE The Band.


Download: "Abraxas", "Oh, Hello Ghost"
For The Fans Of: HORSE The Band, The Mars Volta, The Sound Of Animals Fighting,

Release Date 22.09.2008
Hassle Records

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