Review Summary: Recommended if you have an open mind when it comes to music
Artist: A Skylit Drive
Album: Wires…And The Concept of Breathing
Date: May 20, 2008
Michael “Jag” jagmin – Lead Vocals
Joey Wilson – Guitar
Kyle Simmons – Keys & Synth
Cory La Quay – Drums & Vocals
Brian White – Bass & Vocals
Nick Miller - Guitar
The first time you hear A Skylit Drive there’s a good chance, very good chance actually, that you’ll laugh. The singer sounds like mix between Geddy Lee and Cyndi Lauper, the lyrics are usually inspired by video games, and if you see pictures of the band they look like your usual, tight jean wearing, white boy whip lash haircut sporting, punks. All of that is presented at face value and will surely turn most people away from the band, but for those who are willing to look deeper and give it a chance, they will surely find something original and memorable.
Formed in Lodi, California in 2006, the band released their debut Ep in 2007 through Tragic Hero Records, depsite drawing very little attention a video for the song “Drown the City” was made. After a change of singers the band is back with their sophomore effort, Wires And The Concept of Breathing, which ends up being better than the Ep. The bands sound has changed so much that at times it’s hard to believe it’s the same band and the biggest diffrence comes with the new singer, Michael “Jag” Jagmin, who, like previous singer Jordan Blake, sings a very high pitched style, but shows great technique and range unlike Blake who at times sounded to whiney to be tolerated, but the power and emotion Jagmin presents in his vocals is surprisingly heartfelt and makes up most of the sound of the band. As good as jagmin is, he offers the main problem of the band, his vocal style could easily be a turn off for anyone not use to the style or anyone not willing to give it a chance, which is sad to say considering his talent. Drummer Cory La Quay and bassist Brian white contribue with their screams and growls which can be good at times but, for the most part, don’t contribute to the music or structure of the album.
The music itself proves to be rather good and fitting for the album: Cory La Quay shows the most talent out of the band, with the exception of Jagmin, for his drums are the backbone of the album with his amazing fills and powerful double bassing,(Check out the intros to “Knights of the Round” and “All it Takes for Your Dreams to Come True”), he also contributes the guttural growls to the album that are average at best. The twin guitars lend beautiful harmonies that fit the vocals perfectly,(See “Knights of the Round,” “Balance,” and “ My Disease”), and at times they can do some great break downs. Brian Whites Bass usually follows the guitar chords, with the exception of “My Disease,” but he does lend the generic sreams heard throughout the album, also Kyle Simmons keyboard and Synthesizer barely gets heard. With the exception of Cory la Quay, the individual band members aren’t especially gifted musicians but as a group they creat something that is original, catchy, and well constructed.
Most people will end up hating this band, calling them unoriginal and annoying, and while these claims could very well be argued,(Jagmin can get annoying by the end and the album does lose some of it’s power by the last few tracks), it really only ends up being a matter of opinion. Most will hate it, but for the few that give it a chance and see it for what it is, they will see that A Skylit Drive has potential with their unique sound, powerful vocals, and knack for crafting great, emo-pop stylized, melodies. Highly recommended for any one with an open mind.
• I’m Not A Thief, I’m A Treasure Hunter
• All It Takes For You Dreams To Come True
• City On The Edge of Forever
• Knights Of The Round