red lights

Concert Livewire
concert reviews cd reviews interviews featuresticket swap music news

Indie supergroup's
sleepy debut

Gayngs - Relayted
(Jagjauwar Records)
2 stars (out of 5 stars)
Reviewed: Jan. 14, 2011

Review by Tony Bonyata

Let's face it, the majority of so-called supergroup efforts are, more often than not, ultimately forgettable vanity projects from various well-known artists looking to stretch out from the confines of their full-time bands. Such is the case for Gayngs, a sprawling 23-member group featuring luminaries such as Justin Vernon of Bon Iver, rapper P.O.S. and members from renown indie acts such as Andrew Bird, Megafaun, Solid Golid, The Rosebuds and others.

On their debut full-length, Relayted, Gayngs certainly can't be accused of trend-hopping or copping any specific style, as they create their own atmospheric vacuum that morphs hazy sonic soundscapes with London's Grime music, hip-hop, R&B slow-jams and, more then any other genre, early '80s soft album-oriented-rock. It's a recipe that sounds more interesting on paper than on disc (or zeros and ones for you digital junkies).

While songs such as the effervescent opening number "The Guady Side of Town," the airy "The Beatdown" and the sumptuous juxtaposition of both ambient and R&B on "The Last Prom On Earth" are all great 'chill' tracks, the majority of the album tends to sleepily meander with a foggy weightlessness. Just once I'd like to stub my toe on a more upbeat track and get snapped out of this somnambulist funk, but alas. Even with the hopeful inclusion of the rubbery, synthetic bass-line that bounces through "Crystal Rope," things slide downhill fast as the song concludes with a horrendously cheesy '80s synth-line.

I applaud all of these talented musicians' intent at creating something altogether new, but considering that the end result feels more like a heavy and hazy daydream than blissful meditative music, it's probably best if these two dozen folks stick with their respective day jobs. Forget the dark alleys, the only thing this gang is going to beat you into is a listless and sleepy submission.

What Do You Think?



City & State:

e mail:

Here's Your Chance to.... Respond!

Your feedback will be featured on
Rant or Rave within 24 hours.

Return to CD Archives
Return to CD Reviews
Return to Menu