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Rainbow Danger Club - Treehouse Empire CD (album) cover

TREEHOUSE EMPIRE

Rainbow Danger Club

 

Crossover Prog

2.00 | 1 ratings

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TCat
Prog Reviewer
2 stars "Rainbow Danger Club" is a Crossover Prog band originally formed in China, who released their first EP in 2010 and first album in 2011. Somewhere along the way to their next full album released, they moved to Austin, Texas and traded their Chinese names for English names. They currently have a line up that consists of Jesse Munson on vocals, guitar, piano, ukulele, synthesizer and saw; Dennis Ming Nichols on vocals, bass, trombone, synthesizers, piano and banjo; Mike Corayer on trumpet, organ, synthesizers and vocals; Mike Ford on drums and percussion; and Todd St. Armand on acoustic and electric cello. That's quite an array of instruments.

In January of 2019 they released their 3rd full length album called "Treehouse Empire" which consists of 11 tracks that are between 3 minutes and just over 5 minutes long, for a total run time of almost 47 minutes.

The music on this album is mostly sci-fi oriented, well-produced pop with very little progressive qualities. The music is pleasant enough and quite easy to listen to, but it is hard to find anything really challenging on this album. The lyrics are a bit cheesy at times and the vocals have a slightly peaceful and airy quality to them, and the music mostly supports the vocals with the occasional short interlude stuck between the verses and choruses in a typical pop structure, but with a bit of lushness provided by the many synthesizers that are used.

"The Art of Forgetting" has a nice 6 / 8 slow swing tempo to it with a violin setting it apart from the sound of the other tracks. It's nice and captivating, but simple and easy on the ears. "Friend or Foe" uses an almost mariachi sounding trumpet, showing that the band is trying to adopt some of the local Austin sound into their pop. The song tries to be on the dark side even adding eerie sounding background vocals, but it is too pop sounding to be convincing. "The Day the Earth Stood Still" tries to add more intensity in using heavier guitars and siren effects, but ends up failing in the overall delivery. "Enduring Love" has a rag-time style to it, trying to get the "Dr. Dog" sound, but again, sounding unconvincing even with the violin.

The overall sound is a bit corporate sounding. I'm not really sure what the band is trying to achieve, if they are really sold on perfect pop melodies or if they are using music for commercial purposes. The non-challenging songs do tend to wear out their welcome in my own tastes in music. The perfection in the production, vocals and instrumental backing tends to feel thin as far as authenticity in heart and soul are concerned, so it all comes off feeling a bit commercial and schmaltzy. If you like your music really poppy and simple, then by all means, try this out. But I will tell you there really isn't anything progressive about this and it gets more annoying as it goes, using pop formulas that have been used before and trying to incorporate other styles to try to sound relevant. Everything is just too perfect, but in it's perfection it loses any heart and soul.

TCat | 2/5 |

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