Review Summary: Music For People is a lush, solemn, heartfelt trip through Jon Crosby's emotions through the use of soundscapes, tons of instruments, and one of the most beautiful yet depressing ballads ever, I Don't Have Anything.
VAST is almost impossible to classify into any genre. They're part progressive, they're part alternative, and they're part odd. Their music is just so different from everything else; and it hasn't done much for them other than spawn a moderate hit, Free
, which happens to be featured on this album. In VAST's case, different isn't good. Their music is so out there, and strange it's a challenge to listen to, as their debut album featured european choirs and a variety of unused instruments, especially for a rock band.
But with Music For People
, VAST took a step towards the mainstream making their music a little bit more accessible. Focusing more on hard, rough, and crunchy guitar riffs, Music For People
manages to sound as hard as VAST ever has while creating a dark and bland feeling you can't escape. For example, when I listen to Free
, I feel as if I'm dirty and trapped in a dark room. Whether it was VAST's intention or not, Music For People
manages to be one of the most solemn yet dark feeling albums ever even though the lyrics don't reflect that feel at all. Jon Crosby, the mastermind behind VAST truly has how to create unique soundscapes and atmospheres down to a simple science. This was their true defining work, as its not as hard to comprehend and understand as Visual Audio Sensory Theatre
or as simple as Naked
VAST's Music For People
is filled with plenty of harder songs like Free
, an undeniably catchy song. The guitar riffs are forceful and there's plenty of loud noise to go around in this song. The lyrics aren't especially deep or earth-shattering; they are simple to pick up and understand the first time you hear the song. The vocals are just simple yet inspiring, and the song manages to blend into one of the late 90s best songs. There's not much rockers to be found on Music For People
. but Land of Shame
is one of them; as it has a beat that manages to keep the song going and give the song an undeniable old, poppy song feel. The song picks up by the halfway mark and shows a truly catchy and fun chorus and the lyrics have that simple, VAST feel but still make you stop and think everytime you hear them. But, Jon Crosby manages to turn the song into a harder-almost-metal song by the end where he starts screaming and the guitars start to pick up and get louder and faster. The song is just astounding as it manages to feel epic because it just progresses so well. Song Without A Name
features heavier VAST soundscapes and some piano parts which manage to go well with Jon Crosby's echoing, distorted vocals in this song. This is another great song that manages to be just as catchy and fun as Land of Shame
but not as good because Land of Shame
is just an epic song.
VAST isn't known for their rockers, as Jon Crosby's true talent is in making atmospheric soundscapes which manage to take you off to his world. His soundscape echoes were taken a bit too far in his debut, but he perfected them in Music For People
, as The Last One Alive
manages to sound like a typical song but is so much more as the echoes in this album are earth-shattering and his vocals manage to just add to the feel of this song. It's catchier than most of the songs on Music For People
, but still shakes me everytime I hear it. I Don't Have Anything
starts out acoustic and has some violins added in, and also features an occasional cello echo; and Jon Crosby's vocals are largely untouched by anything digital except for an occasional echo. The song manages to take you off into a bland, colorless area and make you feel pity for Jon Crosby as the song is the most deep, sad song on Music For People
. The line, "I don't have anything because I don't have you..." just makes me want to start bawling and crying everytime I hear that line. It's the most deep and heartfelt song on this album by far, and may be one of the most beautiful, heartfelt, and sad love ballads ever made. Seriously, give it a listen...its almost life changing. After the solemn, depressing amazing ballad I Don't Have Anything
, Music For People
manages to showcase its weakest song, The Gates of Rock N' Roll
. It's loud and rough in the chorus, but most of the song doesn't feature any electric guitars, and the lyrics aren't even close to as deep or meaningful as the last song; but it does feature a variety of instruments, especially after the two minute mark. Blue
is another solemn, slower song that doesn't feature much guitar or electric work, but it features plenty of violins and cellos, as Jon Crosby's voice is almost smooth enough to lullaby you to sleep in this song. A Better Place
features some more guitars, but features plenty of violins. The chorus is fairly upbeat and catchy, and features some more guitars; and it's heavily drum-driven. The song features some of Jon Crosby's best vocals, as they are easy to decipher, and the lyrics are so completely solemn and heartfelt you almost drift off onto another planet when listening to it. The last heartfelt love ballad on Music For People
, We Will Meet Again
, is another ballad heavy on emotion, mood-setting violins, and an everlasting feel of solemnity. Jon Crosby's vocals are especially beautiful in this song and his lyrics are very heartfelt.
Music For People
doesn't miss out on much; as its a beautiful album that I can't believe I have lived my life for so long without. This album has been in my collection since it came out and I fell in love with Free
, but I never really gave any other songs a listen. But yesterday, when I did, I was astonished by the beautiful, lush, and solemn soundscapes that are abundant in Music For People
. I honestly think Music For People
may be one of the most heartfelt, meaningful albums ever created; and you should give this album a listen, as its one I can't believe I lived without.