[Album Review] Odonis Odonis- Hard Boiled Soft Boiled
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by Tiana Feng
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Release Date: April 15th, 2014
Label: Buzz Records

I spoke with Denholm from Odonis Odonis last month and he reaffirmed that Hard Boiled Soft Boiled was indeed recorded 5 years ago. Before the band was actually formed, frontman Dean Tzenos had rented a fancy studio and used studio musicians to record this album, which includes Kathryn Calder from New Pornographers. What is presented in the LP Hard Boiled Soft Boiled is indeed the originals from ages ago remastered.

What surprised me the most was that it doesn’t sound dated, in the sense that it was recorded so long ago. It fits perfectly into 2014, and must be the reason why it was released this year. Tzenos may have used this album to practice his song craft but it sounds like he may have already mastered it. The opener “Tension” releases itself into the dissonant “Are We Friends.” This turns into the cacophonous “Order in the Court” which turned something abrasive tracks on the album into one of the most addictive this year. There’s plenty of noise on the hard boiled side but it doesn’t lack hooks anywhere, instrumentally or vocally.

There’s literally a track called “Release” to throw you into the soft-boiled side. To say that this dream-pop second half was inspired by Hollandaze would be incorrect as it was recorded years before it. “Angus Mountain” slows things down with the reassuring line, “she never loved you anyway.” “Highnote” is literally sung in a high falsetto. The most intriguing of the second side is the transcendent sounding instrumental track “Transmission from the Moon”. The expansive track moves into the six and half minute closer “Alexa Waits” which builds in sound before dissipating back into space. If this Odonis Odonis album was written so long ago, I can’t wait to hear what Tzenos has learnt from the journey and will write next.