Review Summary: With strong instrumentation and razor sharp hooks, I Am Abomination's "Jaw Dropper" is not something to pass up.
After seeing I Am Abomination live, I was interested enough to take a listen to their EP, Jaw Dropper. The album begins with a prelude that sounds like an expert pianist recorded it. However, this prelude is all computerized. This fact does not take away from the overall effect of the song, which is to set up an aura of excitement around the rest of the EP.
The Prelude transitions nicely into the next song "Heir to the Throne". This song starts with a fast paced guitar line that continues the excitement created in the Prelude. This first song is really where I Am Abomination digs their heels into the ground and makes you want to keep listening. The singer creates razor sharp hooks in his lyrics and vocal patterns that are constantly enforced by the strong guitar playing in the background. As far as drums and bass are concerned however, they are simply average, not bad, but nothing to write home about.
"Ornaments Are for Hanging", the next track on the album, shows much more of what is to be expected throughout the EP. This song contains more of an emphasis on computerization, both in synthesized orchestras and in computerized drum beats. The guitar parts are simpler but create and atmosphere that just works with the singer's vocal melodies. The drums are much more complex in this song, however are still short of anything amazing. The bass tracks in this song, much like the rest of the album, are lost in the mix of guitars, drums, and synthesizers.
"The Next Great American Tragedy" takes a different approach in its instrumentation. This song starts with a semi-generic breakdown that really gets the listener ready for what is to come. Instead of starting out with a bang, the real power comes from the middle of the song. This song, in all honesty, is not the greatest on the album and really gets lost between "Ornaments Are for Hanging" and the fifth track, "Ex-Tinction"
"Ex-Tinction" is by far the best song on the album and a perfect climax for it as well. With a hypnotic riff to start the song off, and an overlapping guitar part that fits in perfectly, the song starts off in a way that captures a listener's attention. The singer continues this trend with his outstanding vocal track in this song, with some of the best hooks I've heard in an album in a long time. The chorus of this song combines the guitarist's ability to create interesting lines and the vocalist's ability to create hooks to I Am Abomination's full advantage. And if the strong chorus isn't enough to satisfy you, even the verses are creative and powerful enough to make you want to listen to the song over and over again.
"Music Gone Wild!" is a song that is just that, music gone wild. At times this can be good, with odd yet catchy guitar riffs and solid vocal melodies, along with steady drumming. My only gripe with this song is it's inability to keep a consistent rhythm that I could really get in to. If you do make it in to the song however you will see that it is a solid song with some good ideas, I just believe that it could have used a little more work.
Finally, "Roll The Credits", the final song on the EP is somewhat of a misfit in the EP. Although a rock solid song, it just does not share the intensity of the rest of the EP. It is however a good song to end the band's first EP and will hopefully leave a good impression on you as a listener. There's really not much to say about the song that hasn't already been said, strong instrumentation with razor sharp vocal hooks keeps this band's songs fresh every time you listen to them.
I am a huge fan of I Am Abomination after listening to their debut EP and can't wait for the full length. The only Cons with this album are the lead guitar tone and the vocalist. The guitar tone just doesn't always fit with the rhythm guitar, but this can be easily fixed with a little amp work, so it's not my major concern for the upcoming full length. The vocalist however can be a little grating on you if you are not a fan of his style of singing. I really hope he works on his range before the full length. By no means however am I saying that he has a bad voice, it is just a matter of opinion.
If you stumble upon a copy of "Jaw Dropper" I highly suggest that you give it a listen.