The opening notes of the lead-off “Might as Well" bring visions of a child ready to run and dance, shout and throw leaves in the air. All the while a young couple, holding hands, steals glances.
This eponymous debut CD by Something For Rockets is a walk in the park, urging movement in as wide as space as possible. Yet I'm stuck at my desk today and I'm left to wriggle in my seat, bobbing my head slightly.
After listening, it's wild to think that singer Rami Perlman is the son of violin virtuoso Itzhak Perlman, though one would have to say he's not quite as high on life as Norah Jones, the offspring of another string genuis, Ravi Shankar.
I don't know how or if that patriarchal relationship informs the music here, except there's clearly an appreciation for trying to inspire a mood. The overall sound is pushing and syncopated synths that weave in and out, under and over casual-as-a-drive-by vocals.
"The Line" is a tune destined for a baller remix, adorned with extra bass and "hep hep" chants in the backround: "It's a Line that you never want to cross. Don't give me that Line (lying?) anymore." The broken relationship tale starts with the quiet, building sound of a marching army of 10,000 privates still a mile away, but coming nearer. Acoustic guitar fingering, reminiscent of Metallica's "One" for its sparsity, fades in and we're away.
"Hypnotic dance-floor beats" the band calls it. With melody. Many of the songs start so quiet, you feel yourself leaning into your (computer in my case), ears tuned in. Some of the drum-machine-and-synth intros sound like the mood music in sci-fi adventure Nintendo games. Especially "Tragic City," "Look Around" and "Dancefloor." That maybe sounds insulting but it's just how it is.
Take a look around the sidewalk is burning. You can hear the sound of everyone conversing. ...
Take a look around this bed here is burning. You can hear the sound of you and I rehearsing.
"Look Around" sounds like something I've heard before, welcome as a forgotten $20 bill pulled out of a pair of bottom-of-the-closet trousers. (Another candidate for a dance remix.) : Everybody's taking you out. Everybody's bringing you down. Everybody wants your name. ... But I'm just here tonight, to try and make you feel alright. Everybody wants your name.