Soli i Sombra
The Armadillo EP


4.0
excellent

Review

by Dancin' Man USER (40 Reviews)
January 16th, 2005 | 17 replies


Release Date: 2004 | Tracklist


I don't think they actually sell their album but you can download the entire thing here - [url]http://soliisombra.com/[/url]

I was originally introduced to this band by none other than the infamous DFelon. There is no written lineup, just their first names - John, Jemayel, Eugene, Dutch and Alysse. It is an interesting blend of alt rock with a latin flare. Prog just has to go in there because....well that's what it is. This isn't the crazy solo kind of prog but the more musically interesting and original type. DT vs. Opeth kind of thing, Solos vs. Tri-tones. Don't start thinking metal though. The closest comparison I can find for them would be Dredg. One of the first things you notice about the band, is the female singer. She has a great voice. It fits the music very well. The album has a slightly strange quality to it, but it doesn't in any way take away from the music. The name means "Light and Shadow" in Latin as I have been told by the bassist (A pseudo rock star talked to me!). This EP has only 7 songs and is a concept as far as I can tell. It clocks in at 42:24. Now for the track by track.

The Butcher
This song is a great opener. It begins with some nice delay/echo effects. It is very melodic and the only track with a male voice singing. The lyrics are haunting "I am the butcher, a killer defined". There is a rhythm that comes back occasionally. My biggest complaint with this song and the band in general is that they never seem to quite climax as fully as I'd like. They build and build but the burst is never quite enough to send me over the edge. I get over it though. The violin in this track is a nice touch. The chorus is very nice to listen to as well and I think the vocals are doubled there. There is a very nice demi break down about 2/3 the way through the song and it ends with static. Exactly where...

I: Armadillo
...picks up. This is possibly the best song on the album. The only downside is the lack of vocals and only because her voice would be very fitting, even without words. The rhythm is clearly a very important part of their music. That does not mean however, that the notes are left behind. The song ends with a strange sample of a poorly tuned radio to a bizarre station.

The Safest Place
This song begins with a piano part that is one chord. The interesting part is though, the gaps. You can hear what chord should go there, it just doesn't. The guitar is akin to Johnny Greenwood's with tremelo and effects. This song is a bit repetitive but still very well written. The break down about halfway is really strong. The song is almost split into two parts. The first half and last part of music are almost like radio song. Then the end and interludes in the middle are like a strange instrumental. A good song overall.

II: Armadillos in Captivity
This song opens with some interesting guitar chords. Each of the numbered songs are instrumentals. This one is almost as good as I: Armadillos The bass plays a major role in this song. It has a little solo near the begninning and is always very audible. This song can get a little old but is again, too well written for that to matter.

Inside the Robot Lair
This begins with an interesting piano part and is surrounded by noises and a quiet drum and bass part. This is another instrumental. This is a very melancholy song. I really like it. It's also the shortest song on the album at 1:49

House of Cards
House of Cards feels like a continuation of Inside the Robot Lair despite the fact that the parts are different. It opens with a very similar feel and arrangement. The vocals are not the kind that jump out at you in this song. They sit back with the instruments. This song is really laid back and has a lot of tension in it. Another song that ends with static.

III: The Battle
Begins with the tail end of House of Cards' static then into guitar. This song seems like it has that laid back feel again but then it bursts into what would be DEP without crazy drumming or distortion. There are also no vocals but there are samples of voices. It's a pretty chaotic song despite the relativley slow speed. The song then lapses back into a more mellow sound. It builds and builds ofr a few minutes adding lots of tension. It's interesting how you can almost hear the battle going on. What it's for is beyond me. At 8:12, the guitar blasts back with a little solo that is the same melody as from I: Armadillo. There is a bit of distortion here and it is about as heavy as the album gets - not very. The song then dies back down as though the battle has concluded. The song just sort of drizzles away and the album is over. This is the longest song at 12:57

This album really shows how this band has a lot of potential for commercial success. It also shows how they could easily turn off the masses. I really enjoy it but wish for more actual songs. That's not to say I don't enjoy their screwing around, but I want more songs. This is definitly something to check out. If you've ever seen them live (from SoCal) I'd like to hear about it.

3.8/5



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user ratings (2)
Chart.
4
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
DFelon204409
Emeritus
October 24th 2004


3995 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm not seeing where you think they'd have commercial success. They're too artistic in the vein of Dredg.

Dancin' Man
October 24th 2004


719 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Songs like The Safest Place have potential. If Dredg ever finds a broader audience, this bad could slide their way in.

Iai
Emeritus
October 24th 2004


3553 Comments


I haven't even read the track-by-track yet and I'm downloading it. DT vs. Opeth with a female vocalist? Get in.

Dancin' Man
October 24th 2004


719 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

They're really closer to Dredg. I should add that.

Tangy zizzle
October 24th 2004


253 Comments


I heard one of their songs on the Gigantomaquia CD from thecomatorium.com - it was really average and kinda tryhardish.

Iai
Emeritus
October 24th 2004


3553 Comments


I've never really listened to Dredg. Despite all the hype around El Cielo.

angry armadillo
October 25th 2004


9 Comments


I am going to downlaod purely on the name....

A Brain On Ska
October 25th 2004


6 Comments


I ran into a member of this band on another music discussion board maybe half a year ago and downloaded this cd. It is quite good if I remember correctly. Good review. I recommend people check this out.

FlawedPerfection
Emeritus
March 2nd 2006


2806 Comments


I can't find this.

But it interests me.

A lot.

pixiesfanyo
March 2nd 2006


1223 Comments


i think they broke up.

Dancin' Man
March 2nd 2006


719 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah. A while ago actually. I actually talked to the bassist right after I wrote this (he IMed me) and he said they had been pretty inactive at that point.

Doppelganger
May 12th 2007


3124 Comments


Somehow, I came across this and I'm really interested, but I can't find this ANYWHERE.

DFelon204409
Emeritus
June 3rd 2007


3995 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Apparently these guys are now rolling under the name Charts and Maps ± a few members.

711
June 3rd 2007


1341 Comments


Oh great now I need something else.

DFelon204409
Emeritus
June 3rd 2007


3995 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm sorry I make your life better.

sixner
January 9th 2008


18 Comments


I really want this album, i heard a song on purevolume.. Where can i find this album now? Anyone have it? i'll trade ya

mail me - sixner_wuwbte@hotmail.com



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