Hey music junkie! First time here? Click over to http://insomniaradio.net/subscribe/ and get all of our content (tons of music) delivered for free. Enjoy your time here, and keep it loud!
Sentinel : Avalanche, by Charles Stepczyk August 27, 2008
Sentinel, a dream-pop four piece from Oakland has returned with another very solid effort on their May 2008 release, “Kites Without Strings”. Avalanche is the second track off their new CD, a beautiful and ethereal pop-driven snapshot portraying jumping into the quick moving avalanche of newfound love without any cares in the world.
Sentinel formed in 2000 in Long Beach, California as a project between musical visionary Dennis Bestafka and long-time vocalist Tarabud. Following Airborne Infantry deployment in Iraq, Dennis returned to the San Francisco area in 2003 to rekindle the project and later picked up local musicians Jenna Tiano and David Serotkin. They then put out a few well received albums in the space up to the recent release of ‘Kites’.
You can find the new album at CDBaby as well as over on iTunes. If you’d like to hear some songs from past albums, take a listen to some past IR: San Francisco shows, specifically #42 and#49. [cs]
Westcoast Performer Magazine Review of our album Kites Without Strings, by Keane Li
Sentinel's latest offering, Kites Without Strings, follows their 2007 EP, Sequels and Hunches. The album's dream-pop sound exists enigmatically with a defiance for normal principles: it's ambient and gentle, but energetic and without silence. Inspired by the band's exposure to the cultural and natural beauty found in the Bay Area, this mix successfully describes its four members' experience in living one thing and its opposite.
The eight-track album opens with "Ohlone," leading in with a catchy pulse of rhythmic drums and synth that builds into a driving chorus drenched in polyphonic vocals. The track starts off the album well, providing an upbeat indicator for the following songs.
Midway through, "Spades" serves as a percussive awakening from the dreamlike wistfulness of the album's initial half. Drums drive and keys stand out via repeating riffs adding a refreshing zest, while ambient vocals fill where synthetic sounds sat on previous tracks. It feels organic and vibrant, like sunlight breaking dawn.
The album concludes with "Heroine," a sultry song crawling in Phrygian. The imagery created from Sentinel's lyrics model the band's exotic, modal sound, which is especially meaningful as it represents guitarist Dennis Bestafka's experience as a soldier in Iraq: "There is a tribe on lonely land / Shadows cast the shapes on evening sand." It's a profound escapist end to a profound escapist album.
Filled with sumptuous synth, ultra-reverberated vocals and saturated guitars, Kites Without Strings erupts like one long, happy wall of sound. Most of the songs on the album employ a similar upbeat pop vibe, creating a cohesive quality that might make differentiating them difficult. Thankfully, there isn't a single bad track here, so this little bit of homogeneity proves itself more than welcome. (Self-released)