Porcelain

Porcelain

4.7 4
by Sparta
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

And upon the Great Schism, they were polarized. As Sparta moved determinedly toward marketability, their brothers in the Mars Volta moved decidedly away from it. Not surprising, given the motives that exploded the Drive-In. But as Wiretap Scars proved, Sparta's discovery of a

Overview

And upon the Great Schism, they were polarized. As Sparta moved determinedly toward marketability, their brothers in the Mars Volta moved decidedly away from it. Not surprising, given the motives that exploded the Drive-In. But as Wiretap Scars proved, Sparta's discovery of a viable alt.metal niche didn't cost them their caustic intellectualism. Quite the opposite -- it focused the flame. In turn, Porcelain shatters the notion that musical thoughtfulness needs to include weeping and flügelhorns, or for that matter jarring time shifts and whispers to a scream. These elements appear in their own way throughout -- Jim Ward, Tony Hajjar, Paul Hinojos, and Matt Miller make some momentous noise, and Ward's odd timbre bleeds sincerity. But -- amazingly, 'cause they're on Geffen -- their fibrous grooves, dense watercolors, and peels of shattering guitar arrive unencumbered by label-side meddling, or even the unspoken demands of a cliquey music-fan nation. Porcelain is pure consciousness raising, at once its own powerful statement and a directive straight from the Sparta brain trust to seek out Quicksand and Shudder to Think, to find the soul of Braid, and not just nod heads to its followers. This isn't an indictment of the emo or post-hardcore establishments. But there's just no getting around how much stronger Sparta are than so many of their peers. "End Moraine" teeters on a wire between its tense, busy guitar line and muscular rhythm section as Ward wails himself raw about historical revisionism (Whose? The country's? The band's own? Unclear.) "Guns of Memorial Park" and "Hiss the Villain" fill their multiple angles with roars worthy of Ian MacKaye and intercut strata of angular lead guitar; it's a framework that continues throughout Porcelain, though it never grows tiresome thanks to an ear for pace and meticulous variation. "Lines in the Sand" flattens those arcs and spikes into a gentle slope, and its faraway strings work effectively as valid supporters, not vanity add-ons. "Death in the Family" suggests the martial passion of vintage U2 before fading into the instrumental "Syncope," which is like hearing a guitarist play solo in the stillness of a morgue. The brief piece is also a bridge to the epic "From Now to Never." At nearly nine minutes, it renders each facet of Porcelain in perfect miniature, and emphasizes Sparta's stance as a group working faithfully within the system, but also staunchly and refreshingly outside of it.

Product Details

Release Date:
07/13/2004
Label:
Geffen Records
UPC:
0602498627594
catalogNumber:
000281802

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Sparta   Primary Artist
Charlie Bisharat   Violin
Larry Corbett   Cello
Joel Derouin   Violin
Paul Hinojos   Group Member
Jim Ward   Group Member
Tony Hajjar   Group Member
Matt Miller   Group Member
Dan Smith   Cello
Mario de León   Violin
Matthew Funes   Viola
Sarah Parkins   Violin

Technical Credits

Sparta   Composer
Mike Fasano   Drum Technician
Mike Major   Producer,Engineer
Justin Leeah   Pro-Tools
Jeff Neumann   Live Crew
Bill Scoville   Graphic Design
Gabe Kerbrat   Guitar Techician,Live Crew
Tony Schloss   Pro-Tools
Suzie Takayama   Orchestration,String Conductor

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

Porcelain 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i gotta give it up to these guys. i had heard of them before, but never checked them out until KROQ started playing the loop of "While Oceana Sleeps" while T.H. talks in the afternoon. i am so glad i picked up this album. sometimes when youre listening to the album, they kinda sound like The Cure with a bit more attitude. that was enough for me. definitely recommend this to any music lover.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This album is excellent from the blistering opening track to the very last one. Sparta changes directions several times during the album but it doesn't feel disjointed, it is very natural. EXCELLENT album
Guest More than 1 year ago
im very satisfied with porcelain. spartas new album is not better or worse than wiretap scars. its equally good. highlights include "hiss the villain","end moraine" and "splinters".
Guest More than 1 year ago
This summmer I saw incubus live, some band I had never heard was touring with them. I went online and found some 30 second media and was liking what I heard. I didn't think much about it, then when my friend and I got in there we were very unimpressed. The instrumentals were friggin awesome, they blew me away, but the sound crew didn't do anything with the mic. I couldn't hear a word of it. Of course it's still sweet to say that I saw them. About the album i would recommend it to anyone in the indie, emo-hardcore, or even the punk scene. I really like the instrumentals on this album, and I am impressed evertime I hear it. I am really liking most of the lyrics on the album. After hearing this album and it's lyrics, it makes me mad that I couldn't actually hear vocals.