It’s a sad fact that in any industry, it’s usually the people who can network best who find it easiest to climb up the corporate ladder. You can question Gerry Roche of Tran Qual’s methods of getting his music about – invading other bands myspace pages with music players that automatically start, seemingly hassling people over last.fm, amassing pointlessly high amounts of friends on social networks – but you can’t really argue with his output.
Supposedly making his music only through midi and synth to ‘challenge the commonly accepted notions of what music is’, it might be a pretentious concept, but the end results can still be brilliant. Standout track (and the one blaring when you enter the various myspace pages that have been tagged with his music) New England 1987 takes the atmospheric and stretches it to new levels, a kind of avant-garde take on what a decent doom metal band could do if they were only allowed to use a micro-Korg. The marketing might be stuck in the dark days of 2003, but at least the music itself is something worth shouting about – though probably not quite as loud as Roche himself is bleating about it.
Tran Qual – New England 1987 [download from last.fm]