REVIEW: Nick Wales & Bree Van Reyk – “Tsk Tsk”

First, let me begin by stating what will become quickly obvious upon first listen: “Tsk Tsk” is an instrumental track. This means that its job of entertaining the listener becomes a rather difficult one (or easier, depending on your forte of musical composition). Without any lyrical content, it’s up to Wales and Van Reyk to entrance us and hold our attention not through literary story-telling, but through the sonic landscapes they craft.

Beginning with a soft, ambient electronic melody, the song slowly builds up to a climax before fading off towards the end. But what really holds this track up are the off-beat rhythms and drums. With a sound verging on glitchy, it sounds like the drums constantly change. If it were faster, it’d be right at home in a night club, but the great thing is that it doesn’t need to be any faster. “Tsk Tsk” was composed for a dance performance titled “Happy As Larry”, and it has toured around Australia and will soon be off to entrance European audiences. I haven’t seen the performance myself, but I can only imagine the kind of fun, spontaneous choreography work that must have gone into it.

The song stands well on its own, and it’s the beat behind it that really pushes it out there and keeps it interesting. Well worth a listen, even if you’re not into this kind of stuff. Stretch your boundaries a bit and give it a go.

Verdict: Positive.



BRAND NEW: Motion City Soundtrack – "Her Words Destroyed My Planet"

Produced by Mark Hoppus of Blink-182 fame, the new record from pop-punk band Motion City Soundtrack, "My Dinosaur Life", is to be released on January the 19th.  The whole album is currently available for streaming on their MySpace page, but I’ll be reviewing the track "Her Words Destroyed My Planet" today.

If you go into this track expecting Motion City Soundtrack to reinvent the metaphorical pop-punk "wheel", you’ll be sorely disappointed. Even their "new style" doesn’t seem that much different to the work on "Even If It Kills Me", albeit the lack of dominating synthesizers, which I must say on the whole is an improvement. Though they can be used to good effect, I found them to get on my nerves more often than not. But I digress. Despite the fact "Her Words…" isn’t anything revolutionary, it’s not a bad effort for what they’re trying to do.

From what I’d read about Hoppus working with the band, I had a lot of hope for a more refined sound and maybe something a bit more outside their comfort zone. I guess maybe it is, but to me it just seems like a small step for the band when I was hoping for something a bit more ambitious. However this is just one track from a whole album, it could very likely be a bad indicator on which to judge the remaining tracks, both stylistically and in terms of quality. Time will tell. Strong fans of the band will no doubt love this track, and it may introduce some new people to the band. But for me, I’m currently doubting any longevity I had previously hoped for.

Score: 4/10

Grab a free download from Spinner here.

The photo was found on the Motion City Soundtrack Wikipedia page, is by Rwiggum, and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License.