Listen Up: Wednesday, May 1, 2003
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
Soviet Space

Halfway Home (Self-released)

By Ken Shimamoto

Since releasing last yearís Whenever is Wonderful, the boys in Soviet Space have been through more changes than the proverbial chameleon. First, guitarist Noah Garcia left the band under circumstances his ex-bandmates would rather not discuss. After timely pause, bassman/keyboardist Jim Keith opted to join John Southard on guitar, leaving the four-string axe to newcomer Cliff Wright, an energetic fella with a penchant for knocking over shit on stage. As if that werenít enough, Jordan Richardson fulfilled every skin-pounderís dream of fronting a band, playing guitar, and singing with a side project called Horses that also includes Keith and Wright.

Southard neednít worry about losing his frontman gig, though. The four songs on this e.p., Halfway Home, display a confluence of melody and drive that any Foo Fighters fan would appreciate, and represent as big an advance over Whenever is Wonderful as that full-length did over the bandís previous e.p.ís. Whereas before, on some of their more full-on efforts, the band seemed to be flying in every direction at once, here the energy is precisely channeled and focused, with plenty of dynamic shifts to intensify the effect when the boys put the pedal to the metal and just rock.

Itís easier to hear Southard and Keithís vocals on this disc than itís ever been before, and itís hard not to get swept away by their gloriously overlapping waves of guitar thunder that always manage to complement each other and never muddy the mix ó a neat trick. Credit First Street Audioís Bart Rose for the superior sonics. All thatís missing is the sight of Richardsonís arms flailing as he attacks his kit in the best Keith Moon-Clem Burke tradition. Halfway Home: a sign of more good things to come from Soviet Space.


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