Sound — 8
Which was first -- The Butterfly Effect band or Butterfly Effect movie? Hmmm... Doesn't really matter as these two have nothing in common. Releasing just their second full length record Imago, Australian band The Butterfly Effect are already huge in their Down Under with 45000 record sales on the continent. The first album Begins Here in 2002 was quite a success for a debut, which made Imago an anticipated record around the world. The hint on what the album would sound like was Slow Decent -- the first single off Imago. It's more energetic than most tracks on the CD and has some powerful Rage Against the Machine guitars. The music is very melodic and harsh at the same time -- it's always the balance between rock and emo. Heavy, when it comes to guitars and soft, when it's vocals. The rhythm section is always strong and solid with unusual haunting bass lines. All the variations come from guitars -- whether they decide to join and fight together or produce some beautiful melodies. Kurt Goedhart's stellar guitar work is something the band should be proud of. The guys try to keep it interesting, so you'll remember it not as a just another 11-track 4-minutes songs rock album. Like it all starts with an intro title track, which is a minute and a half instrumental -- a nice introduction to the record that invites you for a journey. In A Memory suddenly changes after 4 minutes into a different song with a different melody. The closing track The End starts with Waltz drums beat which bring some diversity in drums. Goedhart gives us a wonderful guitar solo on this one. Pretty much the same can be said about every song and half way through the record you get lost in similar sounds and howling melodies.
Lyrics — 8
The lyrics are almost poems at their best. They draw gloomy beautiful pictures as the one on the CD cover in your mind. Even though it's not always easy to realize what Clint Boge is singing, as he pays much more attention to expressing himself through singing and creating inhuman sounds than telling you the story. Clint Boge uses his falsetto singing a lot, sometimes even too much as this is what he's really good at. It creates a certain style by which you can differ The Butterfly Effect from other rockbands. He howls, mildly screams and even imitates opera singing sometimes, which appears unreal and magical. Quite a challenge for a rock band! Most of the vocals range between higher notes as Boge's voice looses it's charm when it comes to lower tones.
Overall Impression — 7
The CD booklet is a certain bonus to the album. It's very artistic, full of deep green pictures that create a mood to every song -- from dark and pessimistic to warm with a ray of hope. You've got to give the album a few listen, so it'll grow on you. It'll take you time to get all the details as Imago is pretty sophisticated. The CD goes on the same level from the first to the last track. All songs are pretty good, but unfortunately there are no standouts. After listening to the album you've got a messy impression as there's nothing really catchy in almost 47 minutes and 11 tracks are much like one song. It's obvious The Butterfly Effect's got potential; the only problem, as I see it, is that the band's shy or tired to experiment. Even though Imago has some interesting ideas and is creative, often seems like the music is restrained, being afraid not the fit some standards. Imago is an album very patiently and carefully crafted with tracks thought-out microscopically. The band admits it happened due to their maturing. Songs certainly recall for The Butterfly Effect and their fans, but it may not mean anything to someone new to the band.