Friday, May 18, 2018

For Dean Garcia, SPC ECO Proves There Is Life After Curve!

As someone who still stands in awe of the beautiful noise that multi-instrumentalist Dean Garcia and singer Toni Halliday made as Curve throughout the '90s, when the duo called it quits in 2005, it was a little like finding out that your parents were breaking up after years of living apart.

On one hand, it felt as if they'd left a lot unfinished, but, on the other, how can one expect a flame that burns this bright to shine so long?

As with the dozens of other beloved bands whose break-ups we've weathered over the years, we knew what the future would hold: a scattering of smaller-scale post-Curve projects that might show the occasional hint of inspiration, but, for the most part, never rise to the levels of Curve firing on all cylinders.

And then along comes SPC ECO to not only pick up where Curve left off, but to update the band's "sonic template" for the 21st Century.

Garcia, who also counts himself a member of at least five other bands at any given moment, is nothing if not a prolific studio hound, as proven by the nine full-length studio albums SPC ECO have released since 2010.

Their most recent LP, Calm, was released to quietly in late 2017, yet is as intensely inspired as anything the band has issued to date. Where does it rate on the Curve curve, you ask?

Perhaps a more accurate question would be "Is it Garbage?"

After all, was it not Curve who pioneered the sound and style that Shirley Manson and Butch Vig rode to super-stardom? It's only fitting that Garcia should lay claim to the very template that he created and who better to fill Toni's shoes that Garcia's daughter, who has no doubt grown up around her father's music and, thus, must surely have Curve in her blood.

When you hear an album like this, you actually miss the fact that there is no music industry to even halfheartedly support it.

You miss the fact that there is no major label willing to throw copious amounts of money at the band, much less a network that plays nothing but music videos so that you might catch the last half of one of their videos at 3AM as you come home from "da clubb".

Instead, we live in a world where music that bristles with subtlety and nuance gets lost in the cacophony of idiocy that screams for the spotlight. Thanks to merger-mania, our music media has chosen to elevate all squeaky wheels because, at the end of the day, even a Beyonce wardrobe malfunction that didn't happen gets more clicks than an awesome album that did. 

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