The Ongoing Concept
Solid State Records
20 August 2013
by Gavin Lloyd
“There’s no good music these days; everything sounds the same”. These familiar calling cries are echoed far too regularly by those possessing a smaller-minded attitude towards new music. The Ongoing Concept are a band doing their damnedest to ensure no such flimsy opinions thrown in their direction.
While listening to the band’s debut album, Saloon, it becomes immediately apparent that the band themselves have quite strong feelings on those bands that are quite content to ape whatever is currently buzzy. From the intro skit featuring a disgruntled cowboy, sick of hearing the same thing, to lead single ‘Cover Girl’s rhetoric of “don’t be the print of someone else’s painting”, TOC clearly want to stand out from the crowd.
To play Devil’s advocate, the metal tinged punk that makes up the band’s core sound clearly owes a great deal to many of their contemporaries (albeit with a wealth of whacky instrumentation on their side). Over the course of the album, group handclaps, sci-fi bleeps, banjos, ragtime pianos and someone playing the spoons all make an appearance, with the end result being in a band that sits somewhere between Every Time I Die and Panic At The Disco. And you know what? It’s incredible.
In lesser hands, theSE various bells and whistles would feel contrived and out of place, and just stuck in purely for the sake of being different. Yet everything on Saloon works perfectly because it is held together by great songwriting. Case in point being the most straight forward song on the album, ‘Sidelines‘, a piano-tinged power ballad that in the right hands could become a devastating radio hit. Just one listen of Saloon reveals an absolute wealth of infectious choruses.
For those that are open to new music, there aren;t many things more thrilling than the moments when you accidentally stumble across a new band to fall in love with. We all have albums we’re looking forward to each year, but what’s truly exciting are those bands who pop up out of nowhere that you can’t stop listening to. The Ongoing Solution are one of those band. They may be little known, and on a modest label, but they have just snuck out one of the best albums of the year.
Sounds Like: The geeks of Warped Tour spectacularly getting one over the cool kids.
Standout Tracks: You Are The One, Little Situation, Failures & Fakes