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I am a Los Angeles-based twentysomething. I have a profession, and I have a secret life in music, and this blog isn't about any of that. I like Blogger because I can't read what you're thinking.

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Friday, July 30   >>

THE REVIEW OF KINDO

It can be a scary thing being a fan of The Reign of Kindo. They are, after all, one of the most polarizing groups to have made a splash in the post/prog-rock community in recent years. If you love them, it's because you've accepted the notion their brand of high-brow pop music doesn't invite you to listen; it demands it. If you hate them, it's because their work is simply too big a meal to eat in one sitting.

Whatever your opinion of them is, anyone would agree that sophomore releases from said type of polarizing outfits tend to submit in some degree at the appeasement of adversary listeners. This often means making artistic concessions, much to the disappointment of early adopters.

This isn't one of those times.

No matter how much controversy The Reign of Kindo have sparked in their blending of prog-rock, jazz, pop melodic vocal, instrumental vamping, and subtle lyrical hints to religion, it doesn't seem to have phased their songwriting. Figure A: Their new release This Is What Happens, out next Tuesday.

Peer expectations: "The next album will have a broader target."

Opening track "Thrill of the Fall" is a pop-rock groove in 7/8.

Not to say TROK's playing with unconventional rhythmic wisdom is some kind of upper-hand (it doesn't always work; re: Muse), but making an opening statement to the tune of "15 Step" is a call-to-action that asks, "...and you were saying?" Balls, Kindo. Balls.

Fans will be more than stoked to hear their ability to surprise is still intact, and that their mission remains the same: Beautifully textured arrangements at the mercy of solid pop vocals. Their sound is as tenacious as ever and to be this consistently refreshing goes beyond having a gift. It's very inspiring, and both new and old bands should take lots of notes. Lots.

It's a good day for art, folks. A very, very good day for art.