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Cancel / Sing - EP

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Album Review

On Cancel/Sing, the first few notes of Jeff Goddard's bass are reminiscent of the opening measures of Jefferson Airplane's "White Rabbit," but after only a few more measures the whole of the recording opens up into something more complete and without any predictability. The polyphonic counterpoint between the bass and the guitar is excellent. The minimalist interplay between these two instruments creates a subtle beauty that is as refreshing as the first day of spring. The ensemble is tight with a simple voice/bass/drums/guitar lineup. The guitar runs the long line through most of the recording with its jazz chord pinnings and Joe Pass' elegance. The recording really begins to heat up when Geoff Farina, the guitarist for the group, starts in on his vocal work. Farina's vocals are emotionally raw and convey a sense of poetic urgency that pulls the listener toward the recording. His voice is the final contrapuntal idea in the sonic tapestry. When he sings all of the individual elements of the recording come together. When his voice comes in, the music shifts from being a rather traditional Chicago or D.C.-esque instrumental sound to something quite a bit more interesting and certainly more original. Karate's Cancel/Sing contains two tracks, and with it clocking in at only about 26 minutes it certainly leaves listeners thirsty for much more. Though the press surrounding this release made many allusions to jazz, and there's certainly a jazzy sound to this recording, it nods to a true post-rock something that embodies going beyond rock and everything that it has been. You can do no better than to hear this excellent recording. Find it any way you can; it's different, and it may take you a moment to catch on, but it's well worth it. Excellent.

Customer Reviews


I have every recording of Karate's including any live shows that are available. I have had this EP sitting in a folder for years but have never really taken the time to listen because both songs start out slow w/out any rhythm. I recently took the time to listen to Sing and it has become my favorite Karate song and possibly my favorite song period. The start is unorganized and sounds like more of a soundcheck but gradually turns into a rockin song with a typical Farrina solo. This band needs to get back together!


Formed: 1993 in Boston, MA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Karate began in Boston. Geoff Farina (vocals, guitar), Eamonn Witt (bass), and Gavin Mcarthy (drums) formed the post-rock combo in 1993, and within a year had issued the "Death Kit" 7". "The Schwinn" followed a year later; bassist Jeff Goddard also joined up at this point, with Witt moving to second guitar. The band's eponymous full-length also appeared from Southern, and Karate toured aggressively, appearing both domestically and in Europe. In 1997, Witt departed, while Farina, Mcarthy, and Goddard...
Full Bio
Cancel / Sing - EP, Karate
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