Egon – Behind the Curtain

Behind the Curtain

The songs I’ve heard from Egon in the past have sounded like an emo band trying to move in a new direction, a band that was trying new things and making some different strides. On this, their most recent full-length, Egon appears to have found that new direction. Leaving aside the emo trappings, Egon’s music fall somewhere between the straight-ahead rock, a more progressive rock sound, and even some retro influences.
What strikes me most about Egon are the vocals, a high falsetto that reminds me at times of Yes’ Jon Anderson and at others of Sunny Day Real Estate’s Jeremy Enigk. Sometimes, all it takes for a band to get attention is a hook, like a unique vocalist. But the vocals don’t overpower the music, which is a crisp blend of post-hardcore and straight-ahead rock, with power drumming, light and melodic guitar, thick bass lines, and some keyboard added for good effect.
There’s a serious bass groove on “The Flinches Have the Answers?” that works really well with the light, crisp guitar work. And it flows nicely into “The Blameful Ones,” which alternately features quieter, lighter moments with blasts of guitar-rock and driving rhythms. The band begins to really show off their rock tendencies, as the percussion really leads this song.
The album quiets a bit, flowing into the instrumental “Hostages to Progress” and the melodic yet quieter “Destituted.” These songs stretch above the 5 minute mark but don’t get repetitive, instead conveying a quieter and tighter feel. This is where Egon shines the most, however, with tight, crisp structures and flowing, melodic guitar, letting the vocals provide the intensity. On “The Modest You,” the band steps up another notch, with more driving rhythms and layered guitars and vocals to rock a little harder.
The keyboards, a new addition to the band’s repertoire for this release, make themselves felt on the light and lovely “We All Ponder.” This one works especially well with subdued vocals and the perfect layering of guitars and bass. The band rocks out instrumentally, probably their most rocking track, on “Hubbub.” The closer, “Writer of the Human Malice,” clocks in at over 8 minutes, and it shows off the band’s melodic and punk roots while still maintaining their crisp melodies and driving rock feel. This song gets louder and softer, but by the time that 8-minute mark hits, you just want it to go on.
If post-emo can be genuinely applied as a genre for bands like Camden and The Gloria Record, Egon would likely fall into that category. But their music has a more rock focus, with moments of intense rock finding their way into the band’s tight and melodic songs. Add Yes-like vocals, and Egon really differentiates itself from the crowd. This is an impressive rock album.