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Pass it Along
Artist:  Ultratone  
Label: DaDork Records
Time: 13 tracks/53:16 min.

Opening with a sweep of breeze across the bamboo windchimes and through a Floyd-emulation acoustic guitar strummed rhythm, “Pass it Along” quietly announces the arrival of Louisville indie power pop-rockers, Ultratone.

Slide your Goo Goo Dolls cds to the side and make room for Ultratone.  Feeling a little cold from too much Chris Martin's glum sad-sack on life?  Pop in Pass it Along for a quick cheer-up.

Many sonic delights await the listener on this freshman offering from Ultratone.  From the smooth Gilmour-esque acoustic rhythm in the first track, or the '70's pop vocal harmonies in “Motel,” to the absolutely unforgettable guitar solo hook in “Where did you go, my love?,” where Ultratone make sure you remember it by forming the chorus from the hook and slowing it down for the last four notes of the song.   They try on some early Simply Red style blue-eyed soul in “Nothing to Say.”

It's a rare occurrence for an indie-release to include so many potential Top 40 hits, if the disc were given the right marketing expertise.  It is truly easy to imagine seeing Ultratone on SNL after giving this disc spin after spin.

Take a listen for yourself at their website where many of these songs are available as live streaming or downloadable as mp3 files. 
Http://www.ultratoneonline.com

Only two small complaints or suggestions for improvement exist for this very promising release:  

  1. The mastering of the CD seems to have put a little too much sheen on the high-end of the spectrum.  The CD is replete with catchy songs, but a full listen leaves one a little fatigued and reaching to turn down the treble control as the hi-hats and ride cymbals and acoustic guitar feel a little too crispy on the ears after 15 minutes or so.  
  2. The packaging of the CD and the website is Ultra-Boring, unfortunately.  Likely this was home-grown, so one piece of advice to Ultratone would be to give over marketing, graphic design, etc. to a different agency that can put the proper amount of polish on the entire package.
Scott Lake  10/23/05


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 
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