Review by Dom Vigil
Everything In Gold feels like the start of something huge for New Jersey’s Modern Chemistry. After releasing a handful of EPs, the band is finally dropping their debut full-length album - the product of years of hard work, emotional trials and tribulations and a beautiful expansion of their already well established sound. Everything In Gold feels larger than life right off the bat and as it progresses, it’s impossible not to hear the hard work and emotion that the band has poured into every single song.
The opening song and title track sets the tone for the rest of the album, creating a massive, beautiful soundscape to kick things off, followed closely by the emotional, “The Moment.” This second song feels like the first chapter of this new journey for Modern Chemistry. Vocally, it’s stunning, with subtle yet beautiful harmonies paving the way while musically, things continue to build and build before coming to a head. This same energy can be heard going forward and quickly becomes a driving force behind the album.
The carefully crafted and heartbreaking “Tripping Over You” is a highlight of the first half of the album and the following “I Can’t Take Myself Anywhere” is where things really begin to take shape thematically. The first few tracks build up momentum and set the tone, but it’s when things really come in about halfway through that Everything In Gold finally begins to feel well rounded. Although “I Can’t Take Myself Anywhere” is on the slower side, it also feels very full thanks to its guitar driven sound.
Emotionally, there are definitely some peaks and valleys on this album, making it very easy to feel connected to Joe Zorzi’s honest and transparent vocals as he wears his heart on his sleeve. The seventh track, “St. Rain” is a great example of this. Sonically, it is easily one of the most dynamic songs on the album, transitioning from mellow verses to massive choruses with ease and lyrically, it’s raw and emotional. The following track, “Fever Dream” is minimalistic musically, keeping the focus on the heartbreaking lyrical content as Zorzi asks, “How did I lose you?”
These emotional low points are complemented only a few songs later by the brighter and upbeat “It’s Been A While (Demons),” which not only picks up the pace before the album comes to an end but also provides a bit of diversity as well. This second to last song shines musically, spearheaded by intricate, beautiful guitar work coupled with flawless vocal harmonies.
The album then ends on an explosive high note with “Tradewinds” which effortlessly combines every strong aspect of Everything In Gold. Hard hitting guitar keeps things chugging forward while emotional vocals bring things to a powerful conclusion, one that finally feels like moving on. Although much of Everything In Gold does feel heartbroken, lost and afraid, “Tradewinds” gives listeners a bit of hope. Emotionally, things come to a head on this final song, which leaves plenty of room for more growth and self-exploration in the future for Modern Chemistry.
LISTEN TO: "Tradewinds" "St. Rain" or "Everything In Gold"
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