Pontiak - Dialectic of Ignorance - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Pontiak - Dialectic of Ignorance

by D R Pautsch Rating:6 Release Date:2017-03-24

When it comes to technology the adoption of a new technology has been researched and quantified many times.  There are a few accepted models that depict this, but most of them have the same features of a bell curve which separates early adopters from those laggards at the end.  As with anything this can probably be used in other fields and music is no exception.  When a band is first on the scene we have our outliers, innovators or just plain fans.  Then as the band gets traction, to a smaller or lesser amount this gets bigger and eventually tails off.  The majority of bands probably follow this kind of curve.  However, bands can innovate to try and regain fans and interest.  U2 famously did this when they 'dreamed it all up again' with Achtung Baby.  Even The Beatles knew they had to change and whilst Sgt Pepper is seen by many as the point of innovation it's in fact Revolver where they really changed the game, anyone want to argue for Rubber Soul?  So the question this asks is do all bands know when they have to change up, do they know when they have reached the end of their own bell curve and have to do something different.  Do they reinvent, like The Beastie Boys did entirely or do they evolve into something greater.  Often such efforts fail and bands slip into obscurity or ridicule but sometimes the rewards are priceless.

All of these thoughts travel through the mind when listening to Pontiak's new album Dialectic of Ignorance.  The brothers Carney are on their eighth full length release and rather than the riffs of the last album here we have eight minute openers, stoned out rock, Pink Floyd-esque noodling and enough reverb that you think it might have been recorded in an echo chamber.  It's heavy, indulgent and just a bit too long winded and full of itself to love.  It plods through numbers like Ignorance Makes Me High.  Wastes the promising start of Tomorrow is Forgetting to become something almost worth forgetting.  It almost wants you to lose interest in its long numbers and slowed down guitars.  It's mesmerising in its structures though and you gradually come back to listen again.  Not repeatedly as it can be too close to a dirge to be truly memorable.  However, there is enough innovation here to make you believe this is a band still trying to innovate.  The vocals are just about harmonious enough though to make this a touch above the bland.

The brothers Carney have diversified their sound and interests here.  They have started up their own brewery and this might be a future endeavour they follow rather than trying to tour so relentlessly to keep an audience and grow.  On this showing their attempts to innovate are mixed in their successes and probably not enough to stop their bell curve career path.


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