Menu | Rating System | Guest Book | Archived Reviews:
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z


We All Play Synth


Common Deflection Problems


Human Feather

Release Date:


Reviewed by:

The title of this record is a sort of joke. We All Play Synth is something one might assume hipsters say when describing their latest Animal Collective inspired project. But Common Deflection Problems do not play synths. At all. This is aggressive math rock -- deep fast bass riffs, someone pounding the tar out of a drum kit, and a guitar that speeds by at a million miles a minute playing complex chords. This is an album of songs that zig and zag rhythmically, moving in unpredictable directions. It is distinctly non-synth based.

I want to describe this band as "Purkinje Shift influenced", but since Common Deflection Problems is a London-based band originally from Napoli, Italy, i would bet that they are a band that is influenced by the same things that made Purkinje Shift into what they are. I think. Or maybe our local boys are more influential in the world of math rock than i suspect.

The thing is, what Common Deflection Problems is doing is pretty typical of the genre. If you like fast, angry, complex music, then chances are you will like this. Let's go over the songs.

The Cult of Molok kicks the EP off with a jerky stop/start rhythm and scattered percussion, before descending into some nice riffing. The next song, which is just called Steve, seems really Purkinje to me. It is a little more rock than jazz. So is Hugo in the Continent, which features a nice throbbing bass riff.

Urania is three minutes of the guitar going crazy: stopping, starting again, grinding away. The rhythm section tries to keep up, but the guitar is jumping around like an over-caffeinated squirrel. It is a fascinating tune, and in a way it reminds me of Primus, only on guitar instead of bass, and without the annoying voice.

Common Deflection problems add some echo to their general Purkinje-ness on Lot of Fun Down the Vatican, just to mix things up. It's actually a really nice effect. And then finally, the EP ends with Kasbah where in Common Deflection Problems add in some wailing voice, not singing words, just noises. This is, in my opinion, a mistake. Please don't ruin my math rock with crazy sounds from you friggin' mouth!

Overall, i have to say that this is pretty good math rock, but not exceptionable. Those who enjoy the genre will like this, but everyone else will wonder what is wrong with these people. As they should.

Related Links:



Return to the top of this page. | Return to the Album Review menu.