By Jon Roe
Opening with “Overture,” a familiar classical piece using elements from the Who’s classic “Won’t Get Fooled Again,” The East Village Opera Company’s self-titled debut is the brainchild of Canadians Peter Kiesewalter and Tyley Ross. Thinking it was an excellent, if not original, idea, the two hatched a plan to fuse rock with easily recognizable choral and classical pieces. Rather than being something brilliant and new, the result is more of an exercise in novelty.
For the most part the rock elements on the album are presented in a tasteful manner–except when the group turns the goth knob up to 10 and it ends up sounding like a pretentious Evanescence. Or more like an even more pretentious, somehow worse Evanescence.
Generally, the album’s problems actually stem from the rock music being pushed to the back, leaving the album to play out like a typical classical disc. Though not necessarily a flaw, the rock portion of the disc will only alienate a true choral/classical fan, yet there’s no reason why a rock fan would want to listen to an almost purely classical album. The consequence is an album stuck in limbo between a not quite a classical album, and nowhere near rock.
One has to give The East Village Opera Company credit for the attempt, but the result is not different enough to warrant a listen.