Cartel [Bonus Tracks]

Cartel [Bonus Tracks]

by Cartel
     
 

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In their 15 minutes of fame (20 days, in actuality) on MTV's Band in the Bubble, Cartel made their way into the living rooms and hearts of teens who wanted to find out what it's like when five individuals from Atlanta stop being polite and start getting real while recording an album in front of 23 webcams. The cast is as follows: See more details below

Overview

In their 15 minutes of fame (20 days, in actuality) on MTV's Band in the Bubble, Cartel made their way into the living rooms and hearts of teens who wanted to find out what it's like when five individuals from Atlanta stop being polite and start getting real while recording an album in front of 23 webcams. The cast is as follows: Will, the good guy lead vocalist who downplays his ego despite the fact that all the girls know his lyrics by heart; Kevin, the party-hearty, firecracker drummer who likes having a good time all the time; Joseph, the greasy loner lead guitarist who veers away from the mainstream; Nic, the shy-guy rhythm guitarist with Abercrombie & Fitch looks; and Jeff, the nerdy replacement bassist who overcompensates for his inadequacy with 20 tattoos and constant proclamations of his love for beer (when he's not drinking Dr. Pepper as a plug for the sponsor). In the miniseries, the band is promoted like a product that has been manufactured especially to appeal to the 12- to 20-year-old target audience, and yes, the brand...ahem, band is essentially the emo-punk version of a boy band, but with members who already have a proven chemistry and can actually play their own instruments. The concept is an infallible cash cow and a record exec's dream, since numbers have proven time and time again -- from the Monkees to American Idol -- that artists with televised good looks and winning personalities sell loads of records. The wrench in the plan is that the material recorded in the clear dome on Pier 54 really isn't all that special. In fact, it's utterly bland. The lyrics are filled with meaningless clichés and big hooks that leave all of the songs sounding like cookie-cutter versions of blink-182 wannabes. Everything's slick as can be with extensive layering, pitched vocal treatments, razor guitar distortion, additional drum loops, and walls of keyboards. In a meeting on the first episode, an exec from Epic Records gives advice, suggesting to the band, "You can't have singles, you need a sonic weapon...you have to have an album that from beginning to end is fantastic." After loads of studio trickery, resulting in a glossy production sheen and a bonus remix from Wyclef Jean, the unoriginality of the songs is still the most glaring aspect and the effect is far from a hyperbolic adjective like "fantastic." It could be more accurately described as an "average" album, not unlike their monotonous last record, Chroma, if it were diluted with big-budget bells and whistles. There's not a lot of depth, but that's not a priority when music is created with the goal of becoming fashionable. What's more important here is whether the songs are catchy or not, and the hook of their big single, "Lose It," is immensely hard to shake, like flypaper to a brain. Their second release is not outstanding by any means, but it serves its purpose and, well, the guys are cute enough to make the teenage girls swoon, so it's possible that they could have a shelf life longer than other generic MTV reality show creations like O-Town, Da Band, and Danity Kane. [Epic's 2008 Japanese edition included three bonus tracks.]

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Product Details

Release Date:
01/23/2008
Label:
Epic Japan
UPC:
4547366035131
catalogNumber:
889
Rank:
287008

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Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Cartel   Primary Artist
Kerren Berz   Violin
Kevin Sanders   Group Member
Billy Jay Stein   Keyboards
Jeffrey Alan Cook   French Horn
Lee King   Trumpet
Amy Chang   Violin
Sheldon Henry   Bass (Vocal)
Joseph Pepper   Group Member
Melissa Martinez   Alto (Vocal)
Will Pugh   Group Member
Jeff Lett   Group Member
Dave Clauss   Trombone
Ryan Amos   Bass Drums
Chris Arthurs   Snare Drums
Annie Camp   Cello
Rafael Clark   Bass (Vocal)
Mike "Nyte" DeSalvo   Trumpet
Antoine Dolberry   Tenor (Vocal)
Brandon Dyer   Bass Drums
Ernesto Elcantara   Tenor (Vocal)
Jay Hanselman   French Horn
Shrod Hill   Alto (Vocal)
Tyneisha Hill   Soprano (Vocal)
Michelle Huart   Soprano (Vocal)
Benjamin Jr. Ickies   Accordion
Kedrick Merwin   Trombone
Shawn Pagliarini   Violin
Keera Powell   Soprano (Vocal)
Corey Scienza   Snare Drums
Marylin Seelman   Viola
Almira Session   Soprano (Vocal)
Juliet Simms   Vocals,Guest Appearance
David Vann   Bass (Vocal)
Rafael Veytsblum   Violin
Darnel Watts   Tenor (Vocal)
Caitlin White   Cymbals
Lakeith Sha Williams   Alto (Vocal)
Charlene Wynn   Alto (Vocal)
Nic Hudson   Group Member

Technical Credits

Kerren Berz   Arranger
Chris Black   Management
Wyclef Jean   Producer
Jerry "Wonda" Duplessis   Producer
Jason Gnewikow   Art Direction
Georges "Baule" Reyes   Management
Roger Holland   Arranger
Zack Odom   Producer,Engineer
Terrance Wright   Director
Cartel   Composer
Kenneth Mount   Producer,Engineer
Will Pugh   Composer,Liner Notes
Wes Duvall   Art Direction
David Wiebers   Director

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