steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion


"A King Declares Strength" CD


Genre: alt rock, emo, electronic rock

Michigan, USA

Dec 19, 2008

Electronic elements + modern whine-rock = Narayan. This is dynamic and energetic mainstream "emo" in the vein of Fallout Boy, Pacifier, and Coheed & Cambria. At their best, Narayan creates infectious, melodic rock songs ("The Receiving End of Silence," feel-good anthem "Interrogator"), frequently incorporating electronic beats and synths into the proceedings. I can see adolescents singing along to this stuff, although its proud genericness is somewhat disconcerting. True to their genre, these folks seem to take themselves very seriously, and the songs are propelled by a convincing urgency and a distinct man-on-a-mission mentality. The majority of the songs employ fast tempos and high-powered guitars, although a dash of slow songs has been thrown in to add depth ("20001789," brutal "Metastasis"). I can't fault the members of Narayan entirely for adopting a by-the-books approach to their craft, but A King Declares Strength would have been more notable had it used its electronic-inflected rock formula to construct something more unique.

narayan's myspace


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 12 tracks, distributed by the band, released 2008]