[VELVET] "Well Thought Out and Well Planned" Signal to Noise

Friday, December 21, 2007

[VELVET]"Well Thought Out and Well Planned"Signal to Noise

ON ITS FIRST RELEASE in six years, [Velvet] makes plenty of noise. "Well Thought Out and Well Planned" is a series of clamorous attacks and closes with a 12-minute track, "Theo Huxtable Syndicate," that eventually becomes a feedback exchange between guitarists Joe Brewer and Joe Calvarese. Yet this final section of the song introduces a tuneful instrumental motif that floats atop the din, much the way vocal melodies do on the five other numbers. That strategy is typical of the local grunge-goes-pop quartet, which deftly balances aggression and accessibility.

The album opens with "Bombs Away," whose title metaphor is given unexpected historical context by snippets of FDR's speech announcing the attack on Pearl Harbor. More typical, however, is "Four," which sets off its squalling passages with a chiming bridge and a multi-voice mantra of "We'll move on." The song's lyrics repeat the album title as its music illustrates it: From dirty-guitar tumult to clean vocal chorales, [Velvet] plans its music with great care.

-- Mark Jenkins

Appearing Friday with New Rock Church of Fire, Mas Y Mas and Hammer No More the Fingers at the Black Cat (202-667-7960,http://www.blackcatdc.com). Doors open at 9.

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