[25 August 2010]
Edmonton’s Tim Gilbertson makes solid, perfectly competent, occasionally catchy alternative guitar rock in the mode of countless post-Nirvana major label signings from back in the days when industry bigwigs briefly took the sound of fuzzed out guitars and disaffected vocals as their latest golden ticket. For once, though, the impending collapse of the major label music industry might be a bit of a shame, because if ever an artist might have benefited from some goading into focus, it’s Gilbertson. Clearly talented and admirably driven (Palisades is the 22-year-old’s second album), Gilbertson has an ear for melody and instrumentation, as evidenced by the chiming “You’re Out There”, and he croaks out a convincing Isaac Brock imitation on “Sinners”, but the whole of Palisades finds him reaching into his bag of tricks far too infrequently. What is left is an album of reasonably well crafted, but wholly indistinct, guitar rock that plods along at the same mid-tempo for all of its 10 tracks and ends up feeling overlong for its lack of variation.