Los Angeles-natives Carney look like they’d be a band that I hate, but actually are a band that I love. At first glance, you’d think “ahh shit, another crappy Panic(whatever symbol they’re using these days) at the Disco-inspired group”. But you’d be wrong. While that’s the look they’ve adopted, their music is much more the lovechild of Jeff Buckey, Led Zeppelin, jazz guitar, the genre of post-rock and a strange French oddball sideshow thing. Yes, that’s right, a five-way love child.
Reeve’s vocals are absolutely reminiscent of Jeff Buckley’s, there’s no denying it. The whole record is most reminiscent of Jeff Buckley than anything else. The pretty vocals, screamed vocals, soft songs with vicious, distorted songs, and certain little melodic lines just are so similar to Jeff’s masterpiece that it’s impossible to not think of it. Carney’s debut is very impressive in its own right, however. Zane is easily one of the best guitarists in a modern pop band. Piss off, Matt Bellamy, you can’t play anything like this. Jon, the drummer, plays with such energy that he has needed to be aided by paramedics after shows for exhaustion.
The thing that separates Mr. Green from many other pop releases is its originality. They’re not doing a Muse, playing the stereotype of progressive rock with a stereotypical hip hop track thrown in for absolutely no reason. Carney play an absolutely original mixture. It’s like, “wow, is that Jeff Buckley? Wait, no, it can’t be, he’s singing that little bit in French, and it sounds a little bit too much like Robert Plant. Wow, that guitarist is a brilliant jazz guitarist! Oooh, weird noises. Hey, this song sounds like nothing I’ve ever heard before. Shit, the singer has a huge range. Well that was a big crescendo.” and so on.
The tracks are all good of their own accord, and they work together into a great record. Even the cheesy love song (“Think Of You”) is not at all cringe-worthy. Carney are really going to blow up into something huge. I would recommend this album, but you’d be very hard pressed to find it in any record stores, I got it from their show. Mr. Green, which came out about a week ago and, as far as I know, isn’t even out in their home country yet, is definitely a record worth owning if you can get a hold of it.
Choice tracks: Tomorrow’s Another Day; Amelie; Testify; Nothing Without You; Think Of You
If you like: Jeff Buckley, Led Zeppelin, Muse, Queen