Event Horizon - 'Episode'

Independent Spotlight is a continuing series on Stewart’s blog. The series revolves around independent artists and bands sending their music to Brett to review. No band is promised a positive review, and all music is reviewed honestly in an effort to better independent music.

In this edition of the Independent Spotlight, we shine our gaze on Event Horizon, an independent outfit from New York that will be on tour throughout this month. The band will be hitting a variety of states in the US from July 13 to 27. In light of their new tour, it’s worth revisiting their last studio endeavor, an album called ‘Episode.’ It was released in November of 2012. Is it holding up nicely in 2016? Let’s find out.

Event Horizon is a fascinating rock band. They seem to occupy several sub-genres while ever fully committing to any of them. I’d typically have a qualm with this, but I think they’ve actually carved a hole for themselves in that space that’s perfect for them and their audience. Event Horizon melds experimental rock, classic rock, and hard rock to great success.

As a music critic, I sometimes have to separate my personal preference from what I still understand is ‘good.’ As the opening of ‘Episode’ portrays, Event Horizon has a lead vocalist, John Clark, who is working the mid 1980s vocal style. He’s high-pitched - a modern Geddy Lee. Now, personally, I struggle with the piercing nature of this delivery. If you’re like me, ‘Rift’ should turn you off of the album pretty quick.

If you like that kind of style, or are open to giving it a chance, then Event Horizon has plenty to offer - I can most certainly concede that even if it isn’t my preferred vocal style. The instrumental performances on ‘Rift’ are incredibly good, and again, echo an era akin to the 80s. I absolutely adore ‘Open and Emerge,’ though. Though Clark’s intensity is pleasant if it appeals to you, having him removed from the picture lets the band create a truly stunning aural landscape.

‘Fluorescence’ is the best of both worlds, giving both Clark and the rest of the band plenty of room to stretch their wings without inhibiting one another. The extensively instrumental nature of the song lends itself nicely to the band. I think Event Horizon’s musical style should have heavy instrumental representation. A band that performs like this is most certainly worth showcasing at every turn.

‘New Earth Army’ closes the album with a track very akin to ‘Rift.’ Clark fronts it with a powerhouse performance, and again, if you’re not fond of his vocals, this won’t be the song for you. Lyrically, the tracks are decently written, too. For classic rock-esque tracks, they don’t scream “derivative,” which is usually the case.

Event Horizon will definitely appeal to a niche of rock fans. I may not be in the niche, but I can definitely acknowledge a band with solid output. In particular, the middle two songs are rather great. My only real issue is the price. Five dollars for four songs in the indie scene isn’t reasonable. (A buck a song barely is, nowadays.) Other than that, it’s worth visiting if the era of Rush and their counterparts appeals to you.

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