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April 3, 2006 | by  | in Music |
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Sequoya – Cloudbreak EP

Sequoya are a Wellington band who have been around for a little while, though there are rumours the lads have recently broken up. The Cloudbreak EP is self-released and contains four of their songs. Sequoya can probably be best described out as a chilled out, acoustic-y band who mix in elements of folk, dub and classic 60s rock. This album is probably being reviewed at the wrong time of year – it is certainly made for a relaxed summer.

The first song ‘Slow Flame’ mixes in some of both Sequoya’s strong and also weaker elements. The song itself is beautiful and builds intensity nicely. There are a number of musical ideas present – the interplay of guitars and bass are done well. However, one aspect that Seqouya probably need to work on is their lyrics – honestly, how many Wellington bands write about “fire” and “burning? This is not just a flaw with Sequoya (they do it better than some), but there are a helluva lot of New Zealand bands that should at least listen to some Bob Dylan, read some poetry and learn what a metaphor is. Also vocalist Phill Jones, while displaying an excellent, soulful voice should perhaps also be careful that he doesn’t sound like just another dub singer – there are times when Sequoya could be accused of veering towards generic territory.

‘Lie Down’ contains some wonderful expressive guitar work – in fact the guys have recorded their guitars well throughout the EP. The voice seems to fit in well with the guitars, and it’s good to see an acoustic guitar sound interesting, without having to resort to Jack Johnson-like tedium. ‘Across the Floor’ is a strong mixture of dub and 60s rock while the EP closer, DesertMind is a strong one, featuring an extended guitar solo. Sequoya are undoubtedly a band with a lot of talent, and this EP is a good showcase of this. They certainly have things they can work on – but their future looks bright. Let’s just hope they haven’t broken up.

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About the Author ()

Brannavan Gnanalingam has come a long way from being born in the teeming metropolis of Colombo, Sri Lanka. He may be known as feature writer for Salient, but is also the only man in history to have simultaneously donated both his kidneys. He is also an amateur rapper going under the moniker Brantank and hopes to win a Grammy.

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