Land Of Chocolate - Regaining The Feel

Year of Release: 2004
Label: Slipt Disc Records
Catalog Number: SDR12401-2
Format: CD
Total Time: 51:40:00

It doesn't take a genius to come to the conclusion that the Buzby family has some musical talent. After manning the drums for Finneus Gauge (with brother Chris of Echolyn fame on keyboards), John Buzby's latest endeavor is Land Of Chocolate. Buzby (the only remaining member from LOC's debut Unikorn On The Cob) is now the keyboardist/lead vocalist. Guitarist John Covach, whom many know as a contributing writer to Progression Magazine is also a music professor at the University of North Carolina. Covach displays some jazzy runs, and at other times can produce some Hackett like swells and atmospherics from his guitar. He is a fine addition to push the bands sound further. Rounding out the quartet are Wes Hare on drums and vocals, and Gerald Wilson on bass and vocals.

The music is quirky and complex, with a heavy fusion approach. Combine this with an alternative rock attitude, Land of Chocolate has an aggressive streak, and this band can rock. I like the fact that this is not all in your face, as there is enough contrast within the tracks that it never gets that samey feel. Plenty of multi-part vocals are used, and Buzby does a fine job as the lead singer. The title track in particular has my favorite vocal harmonies on the record going into the chorus. Buzby uses a number of varying keyboard sounds, and after repeated listens you begin to tie the melodies together, and discover the little things the band does, like the unison runs between bass, guitar and keyboards.

Standout tracks include the opening "Film At 11," the title track, and "Ungrateful" which offers up my favorite guitar solos of the record. I would like to see the band stretch out with a bit more soloing, but other than that minor complaint, this is an enjoyable disc from start to finish.

Film At 11 (3:23) / The Pursuit Of Happiness (5:02) / Killing With Kindness (5:15) / Misanthropic Cattle (4:35) / Regaining The Feel (5:40) / Counting Sand (5:18) / Red Pill (6:29) / Military Mindset (3:51) / Mechanical Pencil (5:23) / Ungrateful (6:40)

John Buzby - keyboards, lead vocals
John Covach - guitars, vocals
Wes Hare - Drums, vocals
Gerald Wilson - bass, vocals

Unikorn On The Cob (2001)
Regaining The Feel (2004)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin US

Added: July 25th 2004
Reviewer: Eric Porter

Artist website:
Hits: 988
Language: english


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