Sunday, December 02, 2012

Camber ‎– Beautiful Charade (1997)

On their critically-acclaimed debut Beautiful Charade, Camber translates the desperation of an empty, lost soul into surprising thought and beauty in music. It's a delicate display on the art of dynamics that will leave you speechless. Driving, distorted guitars, tortured vocals and painfully-resigned introspection to the edge, with an incredible wrist-slitting vocal style. Raging when asked, consoling when necessary, Beautiful Charade is like a good friend in the time of need. Unreleased song "Sunday Brown & Green" on Emo Diaries 1. The first CD ever released by Deep Elm. (DER-359)
Deep Elm Records

"In a world that keeps getting more and more crowded, Camber finds room to breathe on "Beautiful Charade." With their high-rise vocal harmonies, satisfying guitar textures, and down-low rhythms, the NYC foursome carves out a place with space. On "First," vocalist Barry Lott sings of bittersweet understanding, while the band runs a patient race with tension and gritty guitar lightness. Always careful to betray your expectations, they surf a smooth wave of hope and frustration, then tie it in a knot with tricky rhythms and disorienting downturns."
Alternative Press

"Somewhere between Sunny Day Real Estate and The Promise Ring, however many inches that might be, sits Camber, boldly taking a seat and claiming their place in the emo-core all-American line-up. Carving out an identity amongst such close company would seem almost impossible, but Camber has met the challenge and recorded a beautifully original record."

"Beautiful Charade finds Camber driving distorted guitars, dirgy tempos, tortured vocals and painfully-resigned introspection to the edge. Although the band gazes down over the ledge, it never quite jumps. Perhaps the line 'I'm burning, so clean' best describes Camber's particular brand of angst. What sets this band apart is the incredible vocal style. It is wrist-slitting. Even those who are lukewarm about emo-core need to check out Beautiful Charade. Camber are one of the best bands ever to work in the genre..."
Seattle Rocket

"Both melancholic and uplifting, one minute tugging at your heart-strings and the next pushing your heart out of your chest with sheer feel-good exuberance. Vocals that touch you deep inside and harmonies that make you good to feel alive."

"Camber does such a fine job crafting emo-core where planning and painstaking effort are the key. The songs are gorgeous and there's not a hair out of place."
Aiding And Abetting

"Camber wears its repressed rage like a badge of honor...gritty and sweetly despairing."
Alter World

"The power on Beautiful Charade comes from Camber's ability to write effective and not so simple rock songs. Engaging songwriting and performance."

"Camber has mastered the delicate art of dynamics that is so central to emo-ness. The first track 'Hollowed-Out' has one of those euphoria-inducing choruses."

"Beautiful Charade is downright genius. Rock and roll with feeling, which is something we don't see much anymore."

"Camber roll blissfully around with depth of feeling, the music is wonderfully crafted. Put your feet up and let them ease your woes. No one can deny the quartet's thoughtful, sensitive prowess."

"The melodies are lifting in the verses and build tension toward intense choruses. At other times the textures are more subtle with an air of dreamy despair. Always cleverly crafted, never boring, and never a shortage of melodic hooks."
"Often illuminating and seldom predictable, Camber's resonating, emo-core blends post-grunge aggression with blustery melodicism. Expansive arrangements are turned upside down and inside out without losing the flow of the song at hand. Vocalist Barry Lott teeters at the edge of a nervous breakdown, sometimes emoting with the same urgency and determination Bono once did during his early U2 days. Lott's dramatic wails linger alongside dissonant guitars, raucous drums, and vibrating sonic textures."
Aquarian Weekly
Are you a New Yorker? Or the type that disparages this fine city, when I know you are secretly jealous of us lucky, lucky, lucky people? (Hey ex-Mayor Koch! How'm I doin'?) If you loved music in the mid-'70s, New Yawk was the place to be. At Max's Kansas City or CBGB, little bands turned into legends: New York Dolls to Heartbreakers, Patti Smith, Talking Heads, Ramones, Television, Blondie, Cramps, yadda yadda f***ing yadda. Maybe this ole town hasn't produced such a golden crop since, but creative sounds have always emanated, and recent years have been the best in a decade. Inspired rockers Lotion, East River Pipe, Madder Rose, Versus, Ivy, and Guv'ner are now national items, but there's another post-punk bumper crop below them awaiting their due. Among them are French, Saturnine, Ditch Croaker, and this group, Camber. With a wired, heavy, smacking sound, Camber has made strides from early gigs and the foursome's Hollowed Out 7". Gotta love their fiery fury and controlled desperation. The guitars of Corby Caldwell and Barry Lott warp with chiming discomfort, as the bass and drums pound like doomsday. Yet, like French (only heavier), Lott's melodic, thick singing belies the ton of bricks bursting behind. The result is a post-grunge wall of sound, and soft to heavy tension pounding not for the timid! Perfect for a wound-up town.
Jack Rabid 

"Emo" has become a filthy word. You might as well go round talking about "God". But this is an emo record if you want to take that term as having a validity to it. Whatever this mass-culture emo-term has become is nothing to do with any of this, just to be clear. All that shit started when the guy in AFI wore some makeup and they released Black Sails.
Anyway, this is a proper 90s emo record where you have the jangling guitars with skethcy riffs and some guy whining on about how he feels. It's up there with the best records from that era - it has real nice songs to it and some soaring pieces and clever riffs. It sounds heartfelt and not some mass-produced shit. Basically they nailed it before all those shitty bands came out to denigrate the good name of emo.

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