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The Velvet Teen | Elysium | review | alternative | Lollipop

The Velvet Teen

Elysium (Slowdance)
by Tim Den

Know that song "Heaven" by The Fire Theft? Imagine a full album of such lustful pleading, soul-salvation, and engorged orchestral accompaniment, and you've arrived at Elysium. What started out as a self-recorded EP eventually became the loss of a guitar player and almost an hour's worth of piano/orchestra-driven epics, toppling over with heartache and understated tragedy. The band must've spent an eternity scoring the whole thing, cuz not one crevice isn't watched over by some sort of ornamental eye.

It's unfortunate that the vocals (similar to Starsailor's) aren't as imaginative as the compositions call for. Sure, the timbre and execution are flawless and endlessly evocative, but constantly shooting yourself to the top and staying there can become tiresome when it's the answer to every climax and crescendo. Seems like one note, one peak is all the vocals want to hit all the time, ignoring the myriad of other options within the melodic range. If they were half as explorative as the instruments, Elysium would've been untouchable.

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