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Chris Grace - Compulsion
Eucommia Records
By MuzikMan
(more articles from this author)
2003-10-31
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Artist: Chris Grace (www.chrisgrace.com)
Title: Compulsion
Label: Eucommia Records
Genre: Rock/Alternative

Chris Grace and his band have more than a few things to say on their new release Compulsion. The CD cover is quite provocative and thought provoking is it not? The font in the album title is cleverly chopped up to suggest something very sexual, and it goes with the cover quite well if I do say so myself. This cover also reminded me of the now famous Pepsi commercial with Ozzy Osbourne and Donny and Marie Osmond. The person looks as though she will unzip herself and something else will emerge, on the contrary, what she is doing is "Offering" you to come inside and visit her world, then she shuns you, shutting the door in your face. The words of the track say-"Just let me put you inside of me, I will not offer you mine, I will not let you in this time, although I want to."Although this lover wants you to get inside her, she does not trust you, yet one last time you can make love then walk away, or can you walk away when you are under the powerful bewitching spell that she cast upon you? It is amazing the meaning you can find in one song.

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The music is just as governing and embracing. With the multi-talented leader Grace showing everyone how it is done on vocals and a myriad of stringed instruments, the tracks are full bodied expressive exercises in alternative rock with hints of pop found lingering in the upbeat ballads. The guitars are explosive, and it is no wonder with the guitar army Grace has at his disposal. I would encourage you to grab the CD booklet and follow along with the words to each song; I promise you will have a good time as you listen. I am guilty as the next person; I do not always pay attention to the words and I get all absorbed in just the music. This time I did both and caught a few key tip-offs to the underlying premise of this project.

The production of this project is just beaming as Grace puts layers of guitars in between the stimulating lyrics for just the right mixture for maximum impact upon the listener's (receptive) ears. I found largely that this was an engaging and get-up-and-go filled release that was worthy of more than one listen. In order to absorb it all, I think it is a necessity to pay attention to every aspect of this recording. Some albums are not so enticing, so there is some validity in taking the time for repeated listens.

Get ready to be unzipped from head to toe, this music stands by ready and willing to help you reveal what is really inside.

1. Thorn
2. Offering
3. Hush
4. CR
5. Safe At Night
6. Inside of I
7. Like Your Father
8. Sunbeams
9. Commercial Free
10. Set Up the Band
11. I'll Get Through
12. Love D
13. Conversations
14. July

Credits:
Chris Grace: Vocals, Electric Guitar, Lap Steel, Nylon String, Slide Guitar, Electric Mandolin
Kim Kiyanu: Electric Guitar
Jeff Thall: Electric Guitar
Jimmy Riot: Bass
Mark Slutsky: Drums
Jane Scarpantoni: Cello
Kevin March: Drums
Kevin Topping: Keyboard


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