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Music Review: Tally Hall – Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum

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Throw The Beatles, Queen, Weezer and They Might Be Giants all into a jack-in-the-box and out pops, not an unnecessarily scary clown – but the incredibly colorful band, Tally Hall.

These comparisons are only a taste of what the wacky yet talented group of 20-something musicians create within just one album. Refusing to be pigeon holed as a genre or sound, Tally Hall throws together the most unusual combinations and convinces any listener to enjoy at least one track, if not all of them. In simple terms, these guys make musical schizophrenia sound like fun.

Although these former University of Michigan students may be fond of their simple uniform consisting of white button down shirts and individually colored ties, their music is a constant thrill ride. Joe Hawley (Red Tie – Vocals/Guitar), Rob Cantor (Yellow Tie – Vocals/Guitar), Zubin Sedghi (Blue Tie – Vocals/Bass), Andrew Horowitz (Green Tie – Vocals/Keyboardist), and Ross Federman (Silver Tie – Percussion) take their band name from an indoor shopping plaza in their home state, Michigan, (with the exception of Horowitz) and received their inspiration from an oddly filled arcade for their debut album name. With traces of carnival-like announcements, random conversations inserted here and there and taking all impossible angles in music, Marvin is surely honored.

Just like Marvin’s museum of an arcade, Tally Hall fills their re-released debut album through Atlantic records with songs of unexpectedly peculiar, witty, and entertaining lyrics. In “Welcome to Tally Hall,” they not only introduce themselves during Sedghi’s rap, but they create the atmosphere of care-free music that any crowd member can get caught up in. With a multitude of layers, Tally Hall transforms simple likable chords into full-fledged chaotic euphoria for the ears. By having three song writers (one being Horowitz who won the 2004 John Lennon Scholarship for “Good Day”) and a laid back attitude of just having a good time, the band is wise beyond its years in musicianship.

Alongside the genuine pop rock track, “Greener,” and the mysteriously incorporated humming in “The Bidding,” they add on perfected humor into songs such as “Two Wuv” – a dedication to the Olsen twins, and a light-hearted difficult tale of writing a “Haiku.” However, with a magnitude of visionaries in the band, there are undoubtedly serious tracks included such as “Ruler of Everything” (an explanation of time’s existence), “Banana Man,” and “Be Born.”

For their first album, Tally Hall is an A.D.D masterpiece of music. With guys who take advantage of harmonizing skills they learned in high school, award winning compositions, and creative ability in visuals, they are a triple threat to others in the business. Their music has already been featured in TV episodes of The OC, MTVu’s You Hear It First in 2006, and their “Good Day” video is in rotation on MTVu today.

Tally Hall’s Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum is released today by Atlantic Records. Get their album and try to prepare yourself as much as you can to be “taken for a ride.” There is still much content that will surprise you only to leave you giddy like a teenage crush and then heartbroken when it’s over.  

Watch their new video for “Good Day,” directed by band member, Hawley (Red Tie). Along with the album release they will also be releasing their ten part “Tally Hall’s Internet Show” online.  

  Go to their official website, and be forever entertained.

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About Seraphina Lotkhamnga