Review Summary: Questamation is Quality. Not the band's best, but fans will want to make the purchase.
Yes, the music is original. Very
original. But the thing is, Ubiquitous Synergy Seeker already proved that they're one of the most original rock acts going with their last EP, Welding the C:/
. When that first set of recordings hit the streets in 2008, it was like the mighty duo - lead man Ashley Boo-Schultz and DJ “Human Kabob” – had just stepped out of a time machine, bearing the music of a distant future.
Their sophomore effort, Questamation
(which is admittedly their first full length LP) sounds well, kind of sophomoric. Don’t get me wrong, the music is good, but unfortunately it just isn’t much of a step forward for the band. It is essentially a longer, fattier version of Welding
. Like so many other artists before them, it seems as though USS has fallen into the second album trap, belting out a decent showcase of their already established sound, but not really offering anything new for the fans.
But like I said, the music is good. Questamation
kicks off with “Cloudboy”, a track that opens with a Pink Floyd-esque soundscape and then pushes into the an effective but usual USS verse: heavy DJ beats and a simplistic chord progression painted over with Ashley’s speedy, trademark vocals. A decent entry, but nothing compared to last year’s opener, “2 and 15 16ths”. Following up are the current radio singles, “Laces Out” and “Anti-Venom”, two get-up and-jump party anthems that demonstrate why the band is currently so popular in Canada. Human Kebob’s talents as a DJ and producer are top notch, and when coupled with Ashley’s unique voice, the resulting sound addictive, to say the least.
Unfortunately, the album drops off at the halfway point. Filler songs like “Stationary Robbery” and “3 Purple Butterflies” are definitely skip-worthy, and the random psychedelic jams (“Better Living Centre”) are nothing special either, and are sure to appeal only to hardcore fans.
Ubiquitous Synergy Seeker churns out a good album with Questamation
. Ash and Kabob have some quality songs here that should please both fans and newcomers, but there are definitely moments of mediocrity that hold the album back from greatness. It seems as though the duo hasn’t had much time to grow musically since ascending the charts with Welding the C:/
a year ago. Give them some time to embrace their creative juices, and with any lucky we’ll them step out the time machine to blow us all away once again.