Bring back what’s new again.
Blending acoustic rhythms with lead melodies, providing a dynamic of harmonic spectrum of sound, Crosstown Chameleons are riding the wave of nineties nostalgia with their latest offering; “Plato’s Stepchildren.” A seasoned, mature band which has been together for over twenty years, their songwriting prowess and intellectual lyricism come full circle as they create catchy rock music which challenges, and entertains the listener. By utilizing every member of the band to sing harmonies as well as leads, Crosstown Chameleon fills out every frequency, as they create infectious, foot-tapping songs reminiscent of happy days of music.
Deeply emotional, seeping passion for the trials of the heart while being mixed with musical intellect, “Earth and Sky” display Crosstown Chameleons ability to write a pop single. Showcasing lead vocalist, Bill Scherer’s ability to hit many notes within a register and capitulate vocal melodies this track blends pop music formulaic songwriting structures with clever metaphor and imagery. “I get high, with just the thought of you. I can’t change anything, to make it right, but I can climb, to get a better view. And I’ll wait right here, between the Earth and the Sky.”
Rich with ebullient lyricism, and dynamic vocal harmonies, “Isn’t Love”, is another stand out track on Plato’s Stepchildren. Featuring drummer Will Montgomery tackling the duties of lead vocals, this track couples melody and pop marketability expertly as another potential radio-friendly pop hit. “Isn’t love a reason for you, when we touch, do you feel it too?”
When I think of your voice,
I think of leather
Other standout tracks on Plato’s Stepchildren are “Leather”, featuring lead guitarist Gabe Stivala on lead vocals, “When I think of your voice, I think of leather”. And, “Hope for the Universe” which showcases Gabe’s guitar chops, as he creates haunting, echoing leads in the intro, before harmonizing lead melodies over Guitarist Rob Kayes rhythm lines. “Alternative roads, and interchangeable strings, I wait to please to please the crowd and fortune bring.”
Although the nineties sound which Crosstown Chameleons is channeling may seem derivative at times, Plato’s Stepchildren does offer a fresh, upbeat sound in a musical environment marred with political disdain, and doomsday connotations. And if the market for this feel-good rock n’ roll may be decades in the past, Crosstown Chameleons can find themselves comfortably in any rock, soft rock radio playlist, touring the college circuits or playing your local pub any Saturday night.
Production values on this album display a maturity from a band looking to make a lasting impression, as the mix expertly keeps all instrumentation tightly snug in their respective frequencies while blending to create full dynamic pleasing the ear.
Plato’s Stepchildren is an essential CD for any backyard pool party or weekend road trip.