Epigene - Popular Dissent

Year of Release: 2003
Label: Amammi Music
Catalog Number: n/a
Format: CD
Total Time: 00:00:00

Epigene, as defined in Webster's II New College Dictionary means, "Occurring or originating on or just below the surface of the earth," and "Foreign to the material in which it is found? like a crystal." I am not too sure how that term relates to the band with the same name but on Popular Dissent this pop-rock band's message seems to be more than just bubbling under the surface of their assorted sound. Their lyrics are biting, satirical, and cynical-like this slice of disdain from the track "Generica"?

I took the car down, drove around Mall Avenue
This culture is a waste of recycled news
Who's feeding, who's breeding culture machine?
To be seen and to sell is the American dream
It gets under your skin through repitition
A sole brand name, we look and feel the same
Do you like what you see? Get yourself on TV
Now baby, if you conform they'll make you a celebrity

That says it all, and it's so true, you cannot deny that the words hit home. We have become a generic, predictable and dysfunctional society, with TV and commercialism fueling the fire. Even though their lyrical content is like an angry snapping turtle at times, their music softens you up for the impact of the words with polished rock-pop hook filled guitar lines and feathery keyboards, making for irresistible and toe tapping musical adventures. Sean Bigler's vocals will recall The Police for some folks no doubt; even the track "Hero Become The Enemy" has the same beat and guitar sound that many Police songs are known for. Perhaps the best example of that is "Inner Figure," which has a melody and sound that is hypnotic. Bigler's voice is spot on as the band cooks right along staying right in step?pardon the expression, like synchronicity.

If you cannot get into this kind of music, you probably have no sense of rhythm and rhyme at all in any of your bones. This is fun music with a serious message, and that fits in with the irony of life. Although that may sound like they are trying to fit a square peg through a round hole, it fits who we have become today through overkill of product advertising made available via all the outlets technology has provided. All of my philosophy and opinions aside, this is a solid album that will continually grow on you with each subsequent listen, that is one thing that is clear without exception, whether you can appreciate the words or not. Admittedly, some of these lyrics may ruffle some feathers, but I can guarantee they will make you question who you are and what our society dictates as "normal."

Check out these words from "Bethany":

At New Bethany
We pray daily
On the word of God, can't watch TV
Living as willing slaves

Rejoice in the love he gave

That is a heavy-duty message that may open up some eyes to other people's reality and truth. I have to admire them for having the balls to say what's on their minds and make it all sound so good with great music. This is a good album for a lot of reasons, but the only way to find out is to listen for yourself, I am sure you will find different values and meanings than I did, which is exactly what the creators of the music want to happen for the listener.

P.S. Sean, you should let your wife sing lead more often, she has a beautiful voice!

The New Voltaire / Generica / Sugarwater / Hero Become the Enemy / Channel Zero / New Bethany / Inner Figure / Power & Glory / The Good in Everybody / Pretty Little Noose / Thumbelina / Twilight 21st Century

Sean Bigler - lead vocals, guitars, synth, sequencer, vocoder, keyboards, Rhodes piano, zither
Bonnie Lykes-Bigler - keyboards, synth, vocoder, harmony vocals
James Burkman - bass guitar, backing vocals
Steven Harris - drums, trumpet, backing vocals

One Bright Sign (2001)
Popular Dissent (2003)

Genre: Rock

Origin US

Added: May 2nd 2004
Reviewer: Keith "Muzikman" Hannaleck
Artist website: www.epigenemusic.com
Hits: 1697
Language: english


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