Tilian Pearson
Material Me


3.0
good

Review

by Jacob R. STAFF
March 16th, 2013 | 48 replies


Release Date: 03/19/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Be cautious with Material Me, lest you end up in a sugar coma

I was shocked to hear that Tilian Pearson’s first official solo venture is full-fledged exploration into electro-pop territory, but why didn’t I expect it? Pearson has always been a pop singer. Sure, he was in post-hardcore group Tides of Man, but what he accomplished was more along the lines of pop sensibilities than anything from the band’s contemporaries. The music was technical and sometimes heavy, but the vocals were always distinctly melodic. So looking back at it all, Material Me was bound to happen, with the album potentially serving as a portal into which Tilian could find his niche.

Material Me doesn’t really achieve this expectation, although it does bolster plenty of powerful tracks. When I say “powerful,” though, I mean that they’re lethal in the same way the last few years’ biggest pop singles have been-- think the sugary magic of “Call Me Maybe,” but with more of a musical knowledge in tow. Pockets of Material Me are deceptively well-thought-out, coming out at first with predictable (but infectious) choruses, and steadily offering unique instrumentation to the mix. At this point, one can hear the singer’s post-hardcore influences occasionally entering the picture, with the confident guitarwork in bolder tracks like “Perfect Lie.” The moment is reminiscient of why we all fell in love with the singer in the first place, because he finds a way to wrap his voice snugly around exciting instrumental sections.

These moments serve as exception to the rule, though, with the rest of Material Me existing in a generic electro-pop realm. The most blatant example is pseudo-anthem “Chemicals,” a track that reveres its radio-friendly ilk a bit too much. The song shows why Pearson and autotune don’t mix particularly well: the singer has a talented voice, and it’s a shame to hear it unnecessarily distorted. The bass wobbles in “Chemicals’” bridge are disheartening, too, and their careless placement show that the Tilian Pearson post-hardcore fans have come to admire has temporarily abandoned his musical identity, all for the caricature of cookie-cutter radio pop.

However, it’d be a shame not to mention the gems here. The most endearing track is easily “Favor,” a ballad whose chorus shines through much of the release’s synthetic muck. The chord structuring is experimental, the electronic elements are deftly placed and Pearson’s voice is presented organically and clearly. This culmination of the man’s talent illustrates what role the musician has been working towards in the last few years, and what one can expect in the future-- that is, if Pearson understands what works best on the release.

Overall, Material Me is quite the mixed bag. The album simultaneously delights and confuses-- its music is enjoyable enough, but nobody particularly wants Tilian Pearson paving this path of haphazardly arranged electro-pop. Here’s hoping the singer’s new gig with post-hardcore group Dance Gavin Dance will help to solidify the edge his vocals have always had, because otherwise they’ll continue to crumble into commercialized dust.



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user ratings (39)
Chart.
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Omaha
Staff Reviewer
March 16th 2013


10302 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

"Up in the Air" (music video): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H94RE-jvHLQ

"Flutter" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rTqRaE4bq2g

"Favor" (acoustic): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=teT4-viSRWA (this one's the best!)


This album is dreadfully puzzling.


elephantREVOLUTION
March 16th 2013


2774 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

this sounds interesting. i love tilian's voice so i will be checking this out

Azn.
March 16th 2013


5615 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

huh I was too focused on DGD to expect this, but I'll check it out

really nice review btw

Digging: Flying Lotus - You're Dead!

Calc
March 16th 2013


12255 Comments


This should be on the radio.

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
March 16th 2013


10302 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Thanks Az. I actually felt less confident about this review than my other most recent ones, so I appreciate the
compliment.

And the sad thing about this album is that the radio-ready tracks here are the worst. =[

mindleviticus
March 16th 2013


8295 Comments


Tilian's voice is pretty odd, so I don't know if I'd really enjoy this. The song you had on fb was only okay. I don't know, I might check it out.

mindleviticus
March 16th 2013


8295 Comments


Great review, by the way

VisceralUproar
March 16th 2013


161 Comments


Three people have bought guest vocals in his preorder. Prepare for some terrible songs featuring Tillian.

VisceralUproar
March 16th 2013


161 Comments


Good review btw. I will be checking this out, the singles are good.

fromtheinside
March 16th 2013


18854 Comments


dangerous posting this review when jt is running so rampant

Digging: Psicosis - The Crippled Machine That Moves the World

Ire
March 16th 2013


41805 Comments


lol

Fieryfenderz
March 16th 2013


1461 Comments


So, as a diabetic, I should take a syringe full of insulin before listening?

AtomicWaste
Staff Reviewer
March 16th 2013


2010 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

He should've just gone ahead and called his solo project "The Gift Brawler Blizzard."

Though this is much poppier than Prize Fighter stuff, it just seems like he's following in Claudio's footsteps quite a bit (and their voices are, ehm... similar). I like this, though. I'll probably pick it up at some point.

Digging: Thank You Scientist - Maps of Non-Existent Places

Asdfp277
March 16th 2013


1213 Comments


sweet review, yeah. please change the "P1nk" in the recommended section plz, it's killing me.

bloc
March 16th 2013


34951 Comments


Hate this guy's vocals. Sad that he is with DGD, whom I love.

DropdeadWHA
March 16th 2013


681 Comments


The songs he released were a bit hit and miss tbh.

sniper
March 16th 2013


19078 Comments


hopefully this is an indication that dgd will be producing a heavier affair.

TMobotron
Contributing Reviewer
March 16th 2013


7137 Comments


I might check this out, I just watched that favor vid you linked a few days ago and it was decent. IDK I really liked this guy with tides because he was kind of restrained in a good way, but I feel like his voice has the potential to be really annoying.

elephantREVOLUTION
March 16th 2013


2774 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

"please change the "P1nk" in the recommended section plz, it's killing me."

flutter sounds just like a pink song

foxblood
March 16th 2013


6797 Comments


so, should i listen to this



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