Sometimes interesting things can happen when you least expect them to. You find some money on the ground, that girl you have your number to at the bar finally
calls you, you get a promotion, or anything else along those lines. We colloquially call such occurrences “luck." Now, many people don’t believe in the concept of “luck," but that’s not really the point. The point, dear reader, is how good things can come at surprising times. You see, during July of 2005, I attended a Love Of Linda benefit concert near my hometown. The Love Of Linda Foundation is a local (to New Jersey) non-profit organization, benefitting cancer research. Every summer, they host a concert featuring up-and-coming punk acts, as well as other local rock-oriented bands. Last summer, said concert was being headlined by The Army of Freshmen
. However, the concert featured a very interesting opening act: a Philadelphian band that went by the name of Overise. Prior to the concert, I had purchased their debut EP A Long Story
, so I could get a feel for what I was to expect. When I first popped the CD into my stereo and pressed “play," I was pleasantly surprised.
A Long Story
is fairly typical pop-punk. You won’t find any real innovation or groundbreaking metamorphoses here. However, what you will find is straightforward, no-nonsense music, that’s quite appealing on the ol’ ear drums. The EP’s five songs ooze melody. From the well-structured (albeit relatively simple) instrumentation, to the smooth vocals, to the addictively catchy lyrics, A Long Story
is pop-punk done right. The entire album seems to flow perfectly, with a very laidback attitude. You won’t hear any loud, angst-ridden tracks on A Long Story
. The EP is rather relaxing and genial. Overise are well suited for this type of music, thus producing a very serene mood over the album. Overise were lucky enough to have 2-Time Grammy Award winner, Michael Tarsia serve as chief engineer in the mixing and mastering process for the disc. Tarsia has worked with various award-winning platinum artists such as David Bowie
, Vanessa Williams
, Patty Labelle
, and Dru Hill
The EP starts with the slow and steady “Outside." The soft intro leads into a fun, hooky song, complete with sing-a-long lyrics. “It’s All Over" is probably the heaviest track on the album. Fantastic guitar-work, combined with fantastic vocals make it an excellent song. The only real drawback is the chorus’ annoying bit of repetition. “My Mistake" is fairly similar to “Outside" in a couple of departments. One of the most prominent of these being that it’s a great song. Overise made brilliant selections with A Long Story
’s track list. “My Mistake" makes the mix perfect, by complimenting the slightly harder “It’s All Over" perfectly. A Long Story
’s best moment would be its acoustical moment, in the form of the song “Heaven." The beautiful intro winds into marvelous vocals. The lyrics are also top-notch,; the best on the album. “Heaven" is the best showcasing of Overise’s bounding potential. A Long Story
ends on a sensational note, with the lulling “Part Time Crush." From the superb piano introduction, to the well-written, emotive lyrics, “Part Time Crush" shows that Overise couldn’t have chosen a better way to end their debut.
Like I mentioned before, A Long Story
is hardly a pioneering album for the genre. For what it is, though, it’s a fantastic EP. I for one, can’t wait to see what the band releases next. Unfortunately, I may have a while to wait, as Overise find themselves without a drummer (founding drummer Kevin Kurtz recently quit the band due to academic obligations). A Long Story
is a fine example of Overise’s potential. Who knows? These guys may even take over the pop world one day. If that happens, I might at least get to make a good story out of how I played a little guitar with them before that concert. Unfortunately, memories don’t sell too well on eBay.
*Interestingly enough, I recently received a message from Overise via myspace. They've apparently recruited a new drummer (Steve Rutt), and are back in business.