The American Scene are a small time band with big upcoming potential. From Berkeley California, their aspirations and goals were no doubt set high from the beginning due to the history of big names coming from the San Francisco Bay and greater California area such as Faith No More, Journey, Jefferson Starship, Papa Roach and Train. There must be something in the air to produce such individuals to go on to worldwide success, so does it look like The American Scene also carries this potential?
Their recently released album Safe For Now (7th August) is their first full length album which was released under Pure Noise Records. This contains 10 well crafted and powerful tracks which has the potential to be enjoyed by all. Their evident Punk/ Rock/ Pop vocals combined with a slight Indie twist, has a soft vibe yet times where they don’t seem to hold back on ‘releasing the beans’ to create full-toned and powerful choruses.
The first track to the album is Just Say It. A rather good introduction consisting of a statement which really defines the band. Straight in with the well placed together, guitar harmonies with light tapping on the ride symbol from drummer Charles Vincent, to then break into a beat more melodic for the vocals to come in sung by Jeff Wright. A rather slow start to the song, however the layering of each instrument is tasty in this song to say the least. Each instrument can be heard individually but the fact it also blends in so well with each other. Im not so good with the technicals so maybe all the instruments are playing within the same key.. but nonetheless there is absolutely no difference in what I am hearing of this song to one you would expect to hear live at those big UK festivals this summer, like Reading or V. They are definitely on the same playing field. Their music video on Youtube however, confuses me to say the least. Possibly a quick mash together of stock film clips or something they really wanted, I’m not so sure. Either way, I do not understand the relevance of 60′s dancers to the band or the song, unless its sharing that small iconography of ‘what is the american scene’ in a greater sense. I would have really expected a professional video highlighting their talents with more definition of what the band stands for, especially with the fact it would be a great addition to the release of the album. But if they’re happy, I’m happy.
Track 2, Blood Orange is another great track. Much like the style of The Dangerous Summer (but certainly not a rip off), this song is certainly one which you could happily listen while driving or catch it on the radio. Very summer orientated song with lyrics about moving on and a heartfelt chorus about love, you also see its genre roots and generally identifying what is The American Scene’s style. A song with good flow, catchy and noticeable riffs so you know where you are in the song at any given time and a calm solo to finish on. Glorious.
Shape Shifter is track 6 on the album. Much deeper and a more emotional sense than previous songs with a very get-up-and-dance chorus to pick up the pace from the slow verses. Although my general favourite types of songs are anything but slow and dramatic, I get a good feel from this song. As it opens with slight delayed and layers guitars, its evident of their introduction styles which can be heard from previous songs however its not the same with them all. Unlike some bands, you do get variation with every song while still being individual to their name. Although not being the best track of the album (personal preference as always), its still up there in how I rate songs.
With most bands or with any song you get a good impression whether you like it within the first 10 seconds. I got that feeling. Just Say It is an amazing song to open the album with. Similar in song construction like Long Drive Home by Say No More, which is already one of my favourite songs so The American Scene has done well to have that impact on me. iTunes opened, album bought and currently listening to. San Francisco is certainly a state of talent and with their album Safe For Now, if you like one song, you will like them all. They all keep in sync in how well constructed each song is, not one lagging behind. This is my first 5 star rating. Have a listen and lets hear your views.