As any Ocean Stater will tell you, Rhode Island has currently been experiencing an explosion of art & music these past few years. Countless bands and musicians are experimenting with different genres, styles and techniques in order to fuse them all together to create groundbreaking original sounds that you can't compare to anything else. A great example of this sonic nirvana is Cranston instrumental experimental rock band California Smile and their brand new EP Dense And Intense. A fantastic piece of music that will warp the mind and invigorate the soul.
A grand mix of 70s era progressive rock like that of King Crimson and Pink Floyd along with the avant-garde jazz of musicians like John Zorn and Ornette Coleman with little bit of a classical tinge, California Smile will blow you away with thunderous breakdowns and inventive rhythms. Consisting of Michael Murphy on drums, Victor Mansella on keyboard, Cameron Brennan on guitar and brothers Jared & Jacob Lafond respectively on guitar and bass this quintet takes things to a whole new level of excellence by merging all of their amazing talents to make truly beautiful music. Now I know what your thinking, Dense And Intense is an EP and not an album. Well, it's my blog so I can write about whatever I want and California Smile's new record is superbly fantastic.
The moment of truth, the part of this piece of music journalism that your eyes quiver to see like a little mouse gazing at a piece of cheddar. Yes, it's time for me to tell you what my favorite tracks off of California Smile's Dense And Intense. You'd think with this EP only having 5 songs on it this would be easier right? Actually not because everything on the record I absolutely love. Anyways, here goes something: "Generally Irresistible" is a great title for this song because I can't stop listening to it, starting out with what seems to be a bunch of people in a drunken rager and then it hits you with an epic guitar riff and symphonic notes from the keys. "No Boring" is no nonsense, hitting you with pulsating rhythms and spine-tingling solos right from the start. "Magical Potion #2" is just what the doctor ordered, flooding your eardrums with the sounds of running water and proceeding to build up the keys, drums and bass into a fury of scorching guitars that sets the song on fire. "Prom Song" makes me feel kind of nostalgic but that's probably because of the song title, it has a striking waltz feel to it that makes you want to take dance lessons, wear a tuxedo and head to the nearest classy gala. As I said before, every track off of Dense And Intense is magnificent so get a copy and listen for yourself.
California Smile celebrated the release of their brand new EP this past Saturday at Fete on 103 Dike Street in Providence that was an amazing show I won't ever forget and they'll be playing The Funky Jungle located in the Smith Hill area of The Creative Capital on February 15th. Until then, get yourself California Smile's Dense And Intense. It'll take you to another world.
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