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The Setup ...And We Call It Decay

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1. Lost Girls Phenomenon 2. From Georgia to Jersey 3. Shindler’s Lisp 4. Big Ups to Babylon 5. Indy Cover the Heart 6. Vote For Me
2002 Gladiator Records
Our score 5

by Rob McFeters
5/4/2003

Sometimes I hear bands, and then I’ve forgotten what I’ve heard less than a minute later.I think there is some danger in being completely mediocre. It’s as if being completely horrible is almost better then being just “okay.”That way, at least people remember you. That being said, The Setup is a three-piece band from Richmond, VA. While their sound is typically post-hardcore, with screamy vocals, The Setup throw little hints of metal and vicious punk rock in the mix. Sounds like a great combination, right I love when bands mix things up, but it doesn’t work for me on this group’s debut EP, “...and we call it decay.” The songs on this recording, while being energetic, suffer from, bluntly, too much shit going on. Every song on this release is chock full of energy and angst, and has a consistent melodic, hardcore sound. The vocals, for the most part, are screamy and distorted. An interesting thing The Setup has going on here is that, on five of the six songs, they have two different verses being screamed at the same time. This is a bit much to take, since the dual vocals sound very similar to each other. I think it would be much more effective, if both sets of screams had their own sound. The guitar-work going on here is all over the place, and that tends to smash too much together in my ears. The Setup has some catchy, almost poppy, melodies going on, but, before I can really grab onto anything, the song changes so dramatically, that I just tune out. From an almost “pop-emo” sound to a metallic crunch (that reminds me of old Cave In), is quite a jarring shift. I also think The Setup would benefit from a better recording production. At points, the songs go for quite a punch, but really fall flat. A stronger, thicker, production could really bring out some of that sound. Bottom Line: The Setup could make a decent impression with this debut CD, because this definitely isn’t a bad release. The problem is that it is such an average release that I can barely come up with the words to describe it. I would say that, if The Setup just leaned either way a bit more (towards a heavier sound or a more melodic sound), then they would stand out stronger. If you like the screamo, post-hardcore sound that you’ve heard many times before, you might enjoy “...and we call it decay”.

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