Krescent 4 - A Rock 'n' Roll Juggernaut
"To be an original artist of any kind you must re-teach yourself to achieve original thought. I don't mind being compared but making your own category of music is our striving achievement."
Krescent 4 has been together for a long time; they grew up with each other through middle school, high school and college. Their first love for the studio came after winning a county battle of the bands in Michigan in 1991. They won a five-song original music demo. The other bands that competed were two and three times their age so when the youngsters took the stage and started playing original music the audience was blown away. The headliner of the battle that night was Zack Wilde, so Krescent 4 were in their glory and obviously totally energized by the event. A once in a lifetime event spurred them on to greater heights. Here they are now, several albums later, sounding like seasoned pros ready for the big record deal that will alter their lives and everyone around them forever. Are they ready for that kind of success? Just listen to their music and you will know instantaneously.
Quicktime: "Too Close"
K4 is a rock 'n' roll juggernaut that will rattle your cage and keep you coming back for more. They do not blow you away with head banging shots of nuclear powered guitar riffs, yet their sound is very powerful and it grabs a hold of you and hangs on relentlessly. I made a few comparisons in my review of their latest release, a self-titled EP, which I said I would never do when I started writing, but I found that it was inevitable that I do so, and I always do it to compliment a group: "Think of STP meets David Bowie with hints of Burton Cummings of The Guess Who on vocals and you have the hard rockin' in-your-face band called Krescent 4."
Kris, the leader of the group, seems to agree in some ways. He commented, "I think in describing a band, comparisons are helpful for a listener to relate to a new artist, artists in general try to be original so comparing can get insulting." He also added, "I was actually surprised at first by the STP / Bowie comparison, although, after thinking about it, it was a very accurate comparison and a very interesting one." It got my attention that he said that because it has always been one of my concerns right along. I have always worried that I would hurt someone's feelings or insult them in some way by making a comparison; just the same, I have not received any negative feedback for doing so, I think people take it as a given when describing music. If I criticize someone, I in turn make myself available to receive it. That is the risk you take when you put yourself out their and create something for everyone to listen and evaluate. In the end, we all are better people for taking that chance and expressing who we are.
Their EP really rocks the house; it is the kind of sound that wets your appetite for a full-length album with more of the same bone crunching guitars, backed by a heart pounding rhythm section to drive it home. To me, great rock music starts with an essential basic primal level of the music... then everything else is just icing on the cake. On the other side of the coin, when they play live, Kris mentioned that when people talk about whom they sound like, it is always different. As the venue setting and mood changes, so does the bands tempo and the atmosphere they create. I think most people do not think of rock music as being that versatile when in essence all music has that capability, which is what makes it so meaningful in people's lives. Kris put it all into proper perspective when he said, "To be an original artist of any kind you must re-teach yourself to achieve original thought. I don't mind being compared but making your own category of music is our striving achievement. "
When in the studio the band has learned that producers and different artists can be the key in creating something unique and special. One of their songs from the EP, "All My Love," is a complete musical paradigm shift. Instead of the rock down the house mindset, they brought in Jordan Lopez to play timbales, congas and piano for the song. The song is in contention for the next "Jason Friday the 13th" movie soundtrack. Kris thinks that by adding a surprise like that at the end of an album puts rockers in perspective and shows how you are capable of mixing up the material a little on a record, always keeping in mind to do it tastefully.
The future certainly looks bright for this group of rockers. They plan to keep doing the mid west club circuit for a few months then go back to LA a do a record with their independent label in five months, unless of course the luck of the Irish smiles upon them and they get picked up by a major label. They would like nothing more than to do a full album with a major and select a producer with a real budget so it would put them in a better position to make some amazing sounds. I have the feeling that they will produce another remarkable rock jewel regardless of the label or producer they associate themselves with in the future. When you have the right stuff, you got it, and when they go into the studio for the next round the magic will happen again, I just know it.
To wrap it up, Kris closed by saying, "Something the band has set in our goals is GOING GOLD. That is not so much to ask, but we do this business because we love it." Those are the words of an honest man doing his best to reach his dreams. That is something we all endeavor to do one time or another in our lives, its just a lot more fun when your making kick ass rock 'n' roll!
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