Since the release of their second record, Pretend it's Not Happening, Goliathon have strode across Indianapolis' local scene like a stallion loose from his confines, where most bands are missing the power to position themselves for any sort of success. The album feels almost like a relic of the seventies--progressive rock and occasional proto-metallic riffing dominate the track roster--but the addition of a saxophone keeps listeners on their toes and Goliathon unique relative to the competition. Much like the debut, fluid melodies weave in and out between one another, and the band's application of the Hammond organ acts as a throwback to times when music was pure and undiluted. Really, only one conclusion can be made from this mess of eclecticism: Goliathon mean serious business as they intend to remedy Indianapolis' lack of a standout rock group.
Goliathon's first album, Without Further Ado, enjoyed many of the
same traits but appeared half-baked without the glossy
production and improved songwriting. By no means was the debut bad; Pretend it's Not Happening
merely takes compositional prowess up a few notches, pushing
memorability to the forefront and the five piece outside their comfort
zone. For Indy's premier rock band, thinking outside of the box has
afforded them with opportunities previously unknown, like a jam-packed CD release show and an enthusiastic fan base emerging from the
city for new music.
Showcasing the band's newfound progressiveness, the album opens with a dancier cut, "Daigenese," and slips into a Middle Eastern-inspired groove between verses. "Jettison" is likely one of the more intriguing songs among the mix--the opening melody odd by anyone's standards--but, nevertheless, gives way to fantastic guitar and saxophone work in the midsection. "Deep Breath" and "Make Tracks" chain together as one piece and brandish what is arguably the traditional Goliathon sound, while the following two, "Howl" and "Kebab," do very much the same thing. Unsurprisingly, interconnectivity continues to remain the biggest reminder of how far the act has progressed with their songwriting.
The second section of the record begins with "Frozen White Wasteland" and reaches a hand into rock's riff palette, the distortion crunchy as it works with the organ to create a sense of fantasy. "One Way in, One Way Out" threatens to tear down the wall enclosing local music as guitar and piano melodies echo after one another in what is perhaps the tightest rock song of the year. The last two tracks, "Riot in Cairo" and "Sing," use various influences and, by anyone's best guess, will become future hits. By the record's conclusion, a real sense of hard work--and blood, sweat, and tears--is apparent, where Goliathon's dedication to their craft is a testament to the countless times the album blows the previous out of the water.
Pretend it's Not Happening is a contender for--if not the best--rock album of 2012. Neighborhood music snobs can now rejoice; no longer is Indianapolis deprived of an upcoming star or a musical hometown hero. Beyond the shadow of a doubt Goliathon still have work ahead, but if they continue at this pace, super stardom is not too far out of reach.