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Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Benoit Pioulard
Enge EP
Moodgadget Records

Rating: 8/10 ?


July 5, 2005
The second song on the Benoit Pioulard EP, Enge, is entitled "Kids are Getting Younger," and it is perhaps songwriter Thomas Meluch's attempt to compose his own historical context. Then again, it may be the 20-year-old's coming of age, as he finally realizes his own maturity due to the growing distance between what he is and what he used to be.

Either way, throughout these four songs, Meluch - who goes by the pseudonym Benoit Pioulard - presents himself as a mature, accredited musician with unique ideas. In a time when the average person his age is listening to, or attempting to perform, pop punk, emo, or hip-hop, Enge is proof that general songwriting talent can be born from a mind that, very recently, was in charge of a teenage body.

At just under 12 minutes, this is a brief release of dense but not overpowering material. Crucial character defining details such as loops and effects take time to unfold, but the overall composition ideas will stick to your soul or slowly slide right off. In this way, most listeners will form their opinion from hearing the lo-fi aesthetic of Meluch's syrupy vocals, sterile acoustic guitar and his appeals toward tape loops and other basic effects like loop pedals and delays.

A great deal of Enge is about subtlety and layering, especially in conjunction with Meluch's exceptional creative vision. At first it is only apparent that Meluch is using acoustic guitar, glockenspiel and vocals to maneuver his melodies, but soon, as songs deconstruct, understated elements and dimensions are uncovered: ambient background guitar distortion, tambourine, percussive taps and claps, tape loops, natural sounds and glitchy electronic editing help him find his way. Meluch isn't your typical indie overachiever; he settles for what he sounds natural doing - making cavernously emotional acoustic recordings by way of his penchant for electronic manipulation.

While kids nowadays are most likely raised on Blink-182 and Eminem, Meluch comes from an inspirational camp boasting far greater originality, with head nods to the likes of Elliott Smith and the Notwist. Altogether succinct, Enge teases its audience for future recordings, hopefully even more elaborate and revealing. And at that point, who knows, maybe Benoit Pioulard might have a whole new life to be inspired by.

Reviewed by Josh Zanger
Joshua Ian Zanger, a native of rural Chicago, rocks many a world with his writing, style, and generally sweet aroma.

See other reviews by Josh Zanger

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