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Arts and Entertainment

Gangi - A | Where The Wild Things Are

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Artist: Gangi
Album: A
Label: Office of Analogue & Digital
Release Date: April 29, 2008

Welcome to Matt Gangi's extremely stylized yet vaguely recognizable world. Gangi's debut, A, acquires strength from not only the exemplary songwriting, but the vast array of musical personalities that the band displays. In a span of minutes, they could turn from Neil Young to Jethro Tull. And to that end, Gangi certainly shows signs of musical schizophrenia—juxtaposing various elements that shouldn't mesh, and yet somehow they do. But, ultimately, what great artist doesn't suffer from some sort of acute sensitivity to their surroundings?

Whether it be a consequence of listening to too much Young (pre-Harvest days) or not, Gangi's high-pitched crooning effectively captures his signature nasal tenor. A's opening track "Commonplace Feathers" definitively delineates the distinctive inner workings of the aforementioned folk-rock wizard. Even the ragged claw-hammer style of acoustic guitar, which often makes its way to the foreground, is worthy of comparison.

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Gangi - "Commonplace Feathers"

His outward advocacy of his political thought and action is consummated through small nuances, such as implementing "informational noise." The most notable instance of which occurs in the interlude of "Ground"--a psychedelic excursion that brings to mind Jethro Tull's tribal beat-infused "Mother Goose" on 1971's Aqualung.

However, Gangi's most gallant efforts are the ones in which the human condition is thoroughly probed. Songs like the hard-hitting rock opus "Waiting On The Line" and the pop-laden ditty "Animals" are deeply introspective, suggesting that they are willing to look reality straight in the eye. And the band is equally unsparing and direct when it comes to promulgating the disjointed amalgam that is their music.

A is a devastatingly beautiful act that effectively embodies the flurry of political hubbub and social madness that affects our daily lives. And furthermore, Gangi's baffling ability to transcend boundaries--not only political, but musical--proves him to be a barometer that is true to present-day life.