Music Review: Bad Reed, Bad Reed

Published on January 19th, 2016 in: Canadian Content, MP3s, Music, Music Reviews, Reviews |

By Tyler Hodg

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The first effort from Ontario, Canada-based Bad Reed is a three-song self-titled EP. Just enough to taste what the band is about, the ensemble exhibits their genre-fluent music within the short compilation.

Bad Reed is unafraid of venturing musically, and this EP proves it. The songs aren’t mainstream, and neither is the production. Any artist that creates music out of passion rather than obligation deserves respect, regardless of any personal opinion of their work.

The group plays with sounds and genres like their music is a large toy box. Yet, with all of its boundary-breaking attributes, there is an aspect of the band that feels amateurish: the songwriting. None of the three songs feel original. They rely on combining unusual styles together, almost as a gimmick.

The first track, “Punch It,” is essentially a Mars Volta song. While the former group was original and innovative, Bad Reed accomplishes the exact opposite here. Similar vocal melodies and effects are used, in addition to the song structure being comparable. When one band specifically can be picked as a music-twin, that means they’ve been ripped off.

The heavy Mars Volta vibe ends with the song it starts with, and thankfully, the following tracks add new layers to the band. “Slackjaw Romance” is a ballad-esque track that showcases the vocals of singer Sydney Sollazzo over a slower, dramatic backing, while “Cassava” is an semi-inspired ride that explores dynamics through acoustic and electric passages.

Bad Reed are off to a unique start. While their songwriting ability lacks, ambition is in the forefront. There is a glimmer shining in the music that suggests that the group has a bright future, but a full-length album will be needed in order to assess their worth. As it stands today, Bad Reed are nothing more than passionate musicians writing mediocre music.

You can check out Bad Reed’s debut album here. 

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